Australia to fund offshore gas exploration study


The Australian Government is planning a study to evaluate the potential of offshore basins in southern Australia under its A$90m ($68.4m) investment in domestic gas security and supply. 

Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Senator Matt Canavan said that the study will include the Gippsland, Otway, Bass and Sorell Basins and evaluate their prospects for future gas supplies to the south-east Australia domestic gas market. 

Canavan said: “Australian jobs and Australian industry have been built up around the plentiful supply of affordable and reliable gas on the East Coast.

“To ensure Australia continues to make the most of our vast gas resources, it’s essential that we support ongoing exploration and development.”

The Offshore South East Australia Future Gas Supply Study will see the collaboration between the Australian government and the Victoria and Tasmanian governments. 

"The government is introducing the Australian domestic gas security mechanism as a safeguard to ensure Australian gas users have access to gas at a reasonable price."

The National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator (NOPTA) and Geoscience Australia will provide the necessary expert advice for the study. 

As part of the study, information about the volumes of gas available in the highly productive area will be collected to identify opportunities and maximise sustainable gas recovery. 

Canavan added: "The government is introducing the Australian domestic gas security mechanism as a safeguard to ensure Australian gas users have access to gas at a reasonable price, while at the same time we can continue our leading role in the global LNG export market." 

The minister also said that the grant programme is open to all Australian states and territories that will lift moratorium and ban on oil and gas exploration.