Energy company AGL has announced a major internal review of its coal seam gas business. The review follows the detection of the banned chemical, BTEX, in flowback water taken from two of its  four wells near Gloucester, north of Newcastle, and from an above-ground water storage tank.

Coal seam gas operations at Gloucester have ceased indefinitely as a result and Mike Moraza, the executive who led the CSG arm of the company, retired immediately.

Julie Lyford, Chair of activist group Groundswell Gloucester, said that “If AGL want to keep their good corporate name, exploring and drilling for coal seam gas in the Gloucester Valley and in Camden – they need to pack up their bags, and walk away … I would suggest they throw their full weight and their shareholders money towards what the rest of the world is embracing, that is the renewable energy sector.”