The Northern Territory Government has established an independent Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the Northern Territory.

The inquiry will investigate the environmental, social and economic risks and impacts of hydraulic fracturing (commonly known as fraccing or fracking) of onshore unconventional gas reservoirs and associated activities in the Northern Territory. 

Chairing the inquiry is the Honourable Justice Rachel Pepper. Justice Pepper will oversee a panel of 10 scientists with expertise in disciplines such as water, geology, ecology, health, sociology and engineering.

Community consultation is a critical component of the inquiry. Go to Have your Say to submit your feedback online and for information about hearings and community meetings across the Territory in March 2017.

Latest news

27 March 2017:  The independent Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the Northern Territory will this week conclude its first stage of community consultation, which has seen more than 1000 people participate in formal hearings and community information and engagement sessions across the Territory. Read the full update.

20 March 2017: Due to inclement weather in Darwin and Maningrida preventing the scheduled flight departure this morning, coupled with unforeseen circumstances in the community and therefore out of respect, the Inquiry’s meeting in Maningrida today has been temporarily postponed. Read the full update.

11 March 2017: The independent Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing of onshore unconventional reservoirs in the Northern Territory completed the first stage of its hearings and community consultation sessions in Alice Springs, Tennant Creek, Katherine, Darwin and Humpty Doo. Read the full update.

06 March 2017: The independent Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing of onshore unconventional reservoirs in the Northern Territory commences its hearings and community meetings schedule across the Territory. Read the full update.

20 February 2017: The Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the Northern Territory released a Background and Issues Paper today, ahead of its Territory-wide community consultation program commencing in March 2017. Read the full media release. Download the Background Issues paper. (2.0 mb)

On 14 September 2016 the Northern Territory Government announced a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing of onshore unconventional reservoirs including the use of hydraulic fracturing for exploration, extraction, production and including Diagnostic Fracture Injection Testing (DFITs). 

The moratorium will remain in place during the inquiry.