Queensland’s pipeline to more gas and jobs gains ground
Published Saturday, 12 December, 2020 at 06:37 AM
Minister for Resources
The Honourable Scott Stewart
CORRECTION - please disregard previous version
Work is underway to potentially help unlock Queensland’s Bowen Basin and create 1000 construction jobs in the process.
Minister for Resources Scott Stewart said the $5 million gas infrastructure study could lead to opening the Bowen Basin as Queensland’s next gas frontier.
“Just like we opened up the Surat Basin 10 years ago and developed a $70 billion onshore gas industry, the Bowen Basin has the potential to be a source of future gas projects and jobs for Queenslanders,” Mr Stewart said.
“My department has been on the ground engaging with the gas sector to scope the study and ensure it will meet their needs to help them with their future investment decisions.
“Any potential new gas infrastructure will need to be fit-for-purpose and drive private investment and growth.”
The two-year study will investigate the best options for connecting gas reserves in the Bowen Basin to domestic customers and exports.
Mr Stewart said gas is playing a critical role as a transition fuel to renewables and is one of the reasons why the Palaszczuk Government are investing into the study.
“The study will also look at opportunities to capture gas emissions from coal mines in the Bowen Basin to contribute to supply and at the same time help reduce emissions,” he said.
“This opportunity is a win-win proposition as it will increase gas supply and at the same time reduce our emissions.
“The other, more important, reason is to help industry grow to drive future resource projects and the thousands of jobs that will flow from them.”
If the study finds the project stacks, Mr Stewart said there would be potentially 1000 construction jobs available and countless opportunities in gas production and other industries which rely on affordable sources of gas.
“Like all resource projects in Queensland, the study will look at the feasibility of the gas infrastructure stacking up financially and provide a high-level guide on technical, environmental and other challenges which may impact timelines and construction costs,” he said.
“Where appropriate, local suppliers would be given preference in line with the Queensland Government’s policies.
“New gas infrastructure would boost the development of gas production in the Bowen Basin and make more gas available for Queensland manufacturers—leading to more affordable gas and supporting jobs across our critical supply chain and industries.”
Minister Stewart said the $5 million study is part of more than $29 million in exploration sector assistance, announced last week, being invested over the next few years to support the resources.
“The resources sector played a key role in keeping the Queensland economy running throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, and with the Queensland Government’s support it will continue to lead the way as we embark on our road to recovery,” he said.
“Through this year’s budget, $9 million is being invested over the next few years to help explorers discover new economy minerals that are high in demand globally in the renewables and tech sectors.
“In addition, to help keep explorers on the hunt, this year’s budget also waives $9.8 million in state rent and we have also frozen exploration fees and charges until 1 July 2021.
“The Queensland Government is doing what it can to help drive private investment and growth in the resources sector and keep business working and people employed.”
Media contact: Michael Saunders – 0428 411 617