The TerritoryGovernment is creating local jobs and protecting the environment, with thedevelopment of a highly-regulated onshore gas industry taking a significantstep forward today.
Amendments to petroleum legislation were passed in Parliament thisevening as part of the TerritoryGovernments commitment to implement all 135 recommendations from the FinalReport of the Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the NorthernTerritory.
The PetroleumLegislation Amendment Bill gives effect to a number of keyrecommendations including:
Creatingprovisions for open standing judicial review for decisions under the Petroleum Act and Petroleum Environment Regulations.
Ensuring gas companies as applicants must be a fit and proper person tohold an exploration permit or production licence.
Empoweringthe making of the Petroleum(Environment) Regulations and enforcing adherence to Codes of Practice.
In particular, Codes of Practice will bevital to the strong regulatory regime being implemented. Codes of Practice willrelate to well integrity, well decommissioning and abandonment, methanemonitoring, surface activities and managing wastewater.
Todays amendments, along with theimplementation of other recommendations from the Final Report of the ScientificInquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing, will allow on-ground exploration to commencelater this year.
Quotesfrom Minister for Primary Industry and Resources, Paul Kirby:
Our Government is making sure that as the Territorys onshore gasindustry emerges, our unique natural environment is protected and localTerritory jobs come first.
It is important to implement appropriate safeguards which is what ourGovernment is doing by implementing the 135 recommendations of the independentscientific inquiry.
Todays amendments are a significant step forward in strengthening thelaws surrounding the development of the onshore gas industry in the NorthernTerritory.
A highly-regulated onshore gas industry can bring economic benefits tothe Territory, creating jobs and attracting investment.