Qld gas to flow for Aussie manufacturers jobs

Australia's first gas directed to for fuelling Aussie manufacturing jobs will be flowing in Queensland by 2021.

Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham today announced another national first, with joint venture partners Australian Pacific LNG and Armour Energy granted a petroleum lease near Chinchilla in south-west Queensland.

"This will help boost east coast gas supplies, and help secure around 650 jobs across manufacturers Orica, Orora and Incitec Pivot's plants in Queensland," Dr Lynham said.

"This is the first block in Australia to deliver gas solely for use in local manufacturing.

"Here's Queensland once again doing the heavy lifting on gas policy and supply."

The lease granting will see joint venture partners Australian Pacific LNG and Armour Energy develop up to 103 petajoules of gas over 30 years from a block 22 kilometres south-west of Chinchilla. APLNG has named the tenement – Murrungama – to respect and acknowledge the local traditional owners in the region around the headwaters of the Condamine River, north to Charley Creek and south of Jandowae. It's also the name of the Indigenous language of the Barunggam people in the region.

Dr Lynham said the production lease came less than eight months after exploration rights were grant, and would secure a ready supply of gas to power production and support existing jobs.

APLNG's Warwick King congratulated the Queensland government for developing this initiative and facilitating additional supply to the domestic gas market.

"Australia Pacific LNG has a strong commitment to supplying domestic customers and supporting Australian jobs, while continuing to meet our export commitments," Mr King said.

He said development activity would commence within 12 months with first gas produced from the block next year.

Dr Lynham said driving more domestic local gas supply would in turn secure local businesses and local jobs.

"It's simple – the only way to boost gas supply and to stabilise prices is to find more gas and get it into pipelines to market," he said.

"This is what Queensland is doing, despite a lack of incentive and investment from the Federal Government, so we can secure jobs well into the future."

Since 2015 the Government has released more than 70,000 square kilometres of land for gas exploration, with over a quarter of it guaranteed for the Australian domestic market. And Senex's Project Atlas is already delivering gas to the domestic market.

Under the 2020 Queensland Exploration Program, another further 6,804km2 of land will be made available for petroleum and gas exploration in the highly prospective Surat and Bowen basins.

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