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Alcoa sues over Varanus gas explosion

28 March 2011

Aluminium producer Alcoa is suing the operators of the Varanus Island gas hub for damages arising from a 2008 explosion which drastically cut WA's gas supply. Alcoa launched proceedings in the Western Australian Supreme Court against the Varanus Island operators; Apache Energy, Tap and Kufpec Proprietry Limited.

It is suing the operators for $158 million. The action relates to the June 2008 explosion at the plant which lies just off the Pilbara coast. The state's domestic gas supply was cut by a third and supplies were not fully restored until months later. 

Apache says it cannot comment on the matter because it is before the courts. Lawyers from Tap say Alcoa's claim is based on the notion that the operators breached their contracts, statutory duties and duty of care.

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