National Gas Infrastructure Plan - Interim Report

Articles Written by Peter Rose (Partner)

The Commonwealth Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources recently published its Interim Report in relation to its proposed National Gas Infrastructure Plan (NGIP). The purpose of the NGIP is to support a more strategic approach to gas infrastructure investment, by identifying and signalling to the market priority gas infrastructure investments for Australia’s east coast, and thereby mitigate the risk of gas shortfalls that may result from delays to the implementation of currently committed projects.

The Interim Report finds that the key to meeting peak seasonal demand and ensuring the reliability of the electricity grid is to have high volumes of gas available close to demand centres, connected by infrastructure that provides for flexible supply at short notice. The key components of an effective short term solution identified by the Interim Report are as follows:

  • Additional production from existing fields in the Bowen and Surat Basins in Queensland, coupled with production from new fields in the Gippsland, Bass and Otway Basins offshore Victoria
  • New southern gas storage capacity, including the proposed new Golden Beach storage facility, and the expansion of the existing Iona storage facility and associated upgrades to the South West Pipeline
  • The development of at least one of the six currently proposed LNG import terminals (noting that the Port Kembla Gas Terminal Project proposed by Australian Industrial Energy is the most advanced of these)

The first full NGIP, which is intended to be released by late 2021, will expand upon the interim report to present a blueprint for the development of the east coast gas market out to 2040. It will consider the more complex investments in the development of new gas basins (such as the Gunnedah Basin (Narrabri Gas Project) and the Beetaloo Basin) and supporting infrastructure (such as gas pipelines, additional compression facilities and further LNG import terminals) required to address medium to long term challenges in the east coast gas market.

Important Disclaimer: The material contained in this article is comment of a general nature only and is not and nor is it intended to be advice on any specific professional matter. In that the effectiveness or accuracy of any professional advice depends upon the particular circumstances of each case, neither the firm nor any individual author accepts any responsibility whatsoever for any acts or omissions resulting from reliance upon the content of any articles. Before acting on the basis of any material contained in this publication, we recommend that you consult your professional adviser. Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation (Australia-wide except in Tasmania).

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