Massive hydrocarbon production has created worries over water use and pollution as the “Down Under” nation rises to the top of global exporters.
From the expansion of coastal ports to the round-the-clock train loads, Australia’s energy boom is a top-down operation that can be seen on the surface of open-cut coal mines and in the depths of natural gas-harboring coal seams. Big fortunes are being made in mining, drilling, and transport, but area farmers fear that smaller ones could be lost as the energy industry gains growing shares of the nation’s scarce water reserves.
Aaron Jaffe is a Chicago-based photojournalist for Circle of Blue. This slideshow was made to accompany an article that Jaffe co-wrote with Circle of Blue reporter Nadya Ivanova. Read Global Energy Demand Driving Australia’s Coal and Gas Export Boom. Reach Jaffe at circleofblue.org/contact.