Gas pilot aims to keep energy at home

Published Wednesday, 25 January, 2017 at 11:08 AM

Minister for State Development and Minister for Natural Resources and Mines
The Honourable Dr Anthony Lynham

The Palaszczuk Government will allocate  a small volume of potential gas supplies for Australian use only from a pilot exploration project in the state’s CSG-rich Surat Basin.

Natural Resources and Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham today announced the release of land for exploration with  strict Australia-only sale conditions on gas produced.

With gas shortages on the Australian eastern seaboard the focus of regulators and industry nationally, the government will release about 58 square kilometres of land for gas exploration, under the condition any gas produced must be used in Australia.

“Reliable supply for energy and feedstock is critical to business and industry, and the jobs and revenue they generate,” Dr Lynham said.

“Gas is a significant transitional energy source as we head to a renewable energy future.

“Secure energy supplies is growing as a critical factor when businesses make decisions about when and where they invest, expand and create jobs.  

“The Palaszczuk Government is job-focussed and we are prepared to try innovative measures like this pilot to generate support private sector investment and job creation.

“This is a pilot to see what can be achieved and how the market reacts.”

The Department of Natural Resources and Mines will release the land in south-west Queensland to competitive tender by February.

The Surat holds some of Australia’s richest proven CSG resources and already supports 4000 wells producing more than 790 PJ of CSG (2015-1615) for export as LNG from Gladstone.

The government will use existing legislative powers to place a condition on the tenurepreventing the gas operator exporting the gas.

The land release comes on top of 11,000 km2 recently awarded for gas exploration in the Cooper and Eromanga Basins, and 450 km2 in the Surat and Bowen basins.

Dr Lynham said the pilot would have no impact on existing gas producers or contracts in the state’s $$70 billion LNG industry.

“The major LNG exporters have extensive gas reserves already in place under production tenure, which has underwritten their investment decision.” he said. 

The successful tenderer will  be required to complete environmental and other requirements before any tenure can be granted.

This includes negotiating land access agreements with landowners and native title parties.


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