Advancing Australia’s gas-fired recovery

The Morrison Government is ensuring Australian gas is working for all Australians by unlocking supply through critical infrastructure so households and job-creating industries can access the gas they need at a competitive price.

As part of Australia’s gas-fired recovery, the Government has committed to boost the east coast gas market across the entire supply chain.

This will be done through the three key areas of: unlocking supply, delivering an efficient pipeline and transportation market, and empowering gas customers.

Affordable and plentiful gas will play a central role in strengthening the economy and Australian industry as the Morrison Government secures Australia’s recovery from COVID-19.

Through the 2021-22 Budget, the Government is building on the progress already made to drive Australia’s gas-fired recovery through $58.6 million of new measures including:

  • The release of the National Gas Infrastructure Plan: Interim Report.
  • $38.7 million for targeted support of critical gas infrastructure projects to alleviate the forecast gas supply shortfall.
  • $3.5 million to design and implement the Future Gas Infrastructure Investment Framework to support the Commonwealth’s consideration of medium to long-term critical gas projects identified by future National Gas Infrastructure Plans (NGIP).
  • $5.6 million to strengthen the Government’s energy system planning framework by delivering a further NGIP in 2022.
  • $4.6 million to develop initiatives that empower gas-reliant businesses to negotiate competitive contract outcomes, including developing a voluntary standardised contract framework.
  • $6.2 million to continue work to accelerate the development of the Wallumbilla Gas Supply Hub in Queensland.

The Government’s National Gas Infrastructure Plan: Interim Report (Interim NGIP) focuses on the gas supply shortfall forecast for this decade. The Interim NGIP provides a blueprint of infrastructure requirements for Australia’s east coast gas market to 2027 and identifies four critical infrastructure projects that are required to progress so the shortfall is not realised, including:

  • Two gas storage projects at Golden Beach and Iona in Victoria
  • The expansion of the South West Victorian pipeline; and
  • An import terminal project, with the Port Kembla project considered the most advanced.

The Government’s $38.7 million of targeted support will accelerate these projects to final investment decisions (FID) and mitigate the risk of commencement delays to help alleviate the shortfall.

This measure also includes $5 million to work with the Queensland Government to deliver a pipeline pre-feasibility study for the North Bowen basin.

This will support the implementation of the North Bowen and Galilee Strategic Basin Plan, currently being finalised by the Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia, the Hon Keith Pitt MP.

Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said additional gas supply must be supplied to consumers at the right price, with infrastructure being key to delivery.

“Gas is a critical enabler of Australia’s economy and helps to support our manufacturing sector that employs over 900,000 Australians,” Minister Taylor said.

“Our National Gas Infrastructure Plan: Interim Report demonstrates the importance of infrastructure to overcoming the forecast gas shortfall.

“The Government will not sit back and allow the shortfall to eventuate – the risk to the economy is too great. Without action to address supply, industry and households will be faced with higher prices, disruptions in supply and unplanned outages.

“Future NGIPs and the new Investment Framework will also provide greater certainty for Australian business and consumers, which will help keep downward pressure on prices that underpins our economic competitiveness.”

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