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  • 20 Mar 2019 1:57 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    SHELL may move into power retailing in Australia suggesting plans for a “substantial” electricity business at a Bloomberg event in Sydney yesterday, with a focus on renewables as the Dutch oil major sees increasing electrification of the power sector.

    The plans are part of its switch to lower carbon energy, though it apparently still sees a future for gas in industry and across the developing world.  

    "For us to remain relevant, if we are no good at low-carbon power, we will lose our customer face business. That would be a shame because we are really good at it," global head of gas and new energy Maarten Wetselaar said, according to media reports.  

    "It will depend a bit on the opportunity set in Australia and how quickly we want to have all the pieces of the puzzle together, but I'd be very disappointed if we don't have an integrated power business in Australia in the course of a decade, and if we're going to have it, it might as well be substantial." 

    "We think there is value to be had on the generation side, the solar farms, wind farms and storage solutions, and the ways with which gas can plug the gaps. 

    "You add in the customer side …and trading in the middle…. and you can make value in all three bits and then you make some value by connecting all three," he said.  

    He suggested in two decades time houses would be fully electrified for all heating and cooling purposes and said "the provision of electrons" to retail, commercial and industrial customers was part of Shell's longer term strategy.  

    Earlier Shell announced it was purchasing Germany's sonnen, a battery company. 

    In February at a Melbourne Mining Club speech Shell Australia chair Zoe Yujnovich also announced plans for a 120 megawatt solar plant for its operations.  

    "On the drawing board have well-advanced plans for our first solar project − a 120-megawatt solar plant consisting of about 400,000 solar panels," she said. 

    Sonnen, meanwhile, put Germany's largest virtual battery into operation, based on a network of home electricity storage systems, though what the oiler paid was not disclosed. 

     Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here.

  • 18 Mar 2019 2:01 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Office Minister Natasha Fyles

    Parliament continues in the Northern Territory this week, with Parliament set to debate the Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill 2018. The Bill includes reforms needed to implement recommendations from the Pepper Enquiry, which will go towards allowing a well-regulated hydraulic fracturing industry to develop.

    Parliament will also debate the Electoral Legislation Amendment Bill 2018, which delivers on the Government’s election promise to return to full preferential voting for Northern Territory elections.

    Two bills will be introduced and passed on urgency this week, to make important technical amendments to current legislation.

    The Criminal Code Further Amendment Bill 2019 will address a shortcoming in legislation that could affect the prosecution of historic child abuse cases.

    The Youth Justice Act Amendments Bill 2019 will clarify and tighten the existing framework for managing safety and security risks within youth detention centres.

    Other Bills for introduction during sittings this week are:

    • The Youth Justice and Related Legislation Amendment Bill 2019

    • The Care and Protection of Children Amendment Bill 2019

    • The National Disability Insurance Scheme (Authorisations) Bill 2019

    Quotes from Leader of Government Business, Natasha Fyles:

    “The Territory Labor Government continues to deliver for Territorians by introducing a number of Bills that will create jobs and generational change, and help us build safer, fairer and stronger communities.

    “A fair and just legal system is important for all Territorians, and the Criminal Code Further Amendment Bill 2019 will help us better achieve that for victims of historic child sex abuse cases.”

    Media Contact: Leanne Hudson 0427 687 079


  • 18 Mar 2019 1:52 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Office Minister Paul Kirby

    The Annual Geoscience Exploration Seminar (AGES) kicks off in Alice Springs today with the highest amount of registrations since 2013, underpinning increased confidence in the Territory’s resources sector.  

    The Territory’s premier mineral and petroleum exploration event, the two-day AGES gathering has already received registrations from around 250 people, making it the best attended AGES conference in six years.

    More than 50 exploration companies from around Australia and globally are sending delegates to AGES, including some that are looking at investing for the first time in the Northern Territory.

    Minister for Primary Industry and Resources, Paul Kirby said the Territory’s exploration sector is growing, driven by strong exploration for commodities such as zinc, copper, gold and lithium, and AGES was an opportunity for the industry to share information on exploration results and new discoveries.

    The seminar comes off the back of some encouraging new data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) showing that:

    • The Territory’s mineral exploration expenditure in the 2018 calendar year was $123.2 million – up 35 per cent on 2017.

    • The NT’s December 2018 quarterly mineral exploration expenditure of nearly $40 million was the strongest quarter of exploration in the Territory since the mining boom days of 2012.

    The ABS stats build on the Territory’s already strong results from financial year 2017/18 where the value of mineral production in the NT reached a record $4.49 billion – a 24 per cent increase on the previous year and the first time the value of the Territory’s mining sector has passed the $4 billion mark.

    Quotes from Minister for Primary Industry and Resources, Paul Kirby:

    “Our Government will continue to support the Territory’s resources sector – driving investment into the Territory, creating local business opportunities, and delivering local jobs.

     “Under the Territory Labor Government, there is confidence in the resources sector – with record values of mineral production in the Territory, increasing minerals exploration activity and certainty for the future of onshore gas exploration.”

    Media Contact: Carl Pfeiffer 0417 910 720

     


  • 07 Mar 2019 5:38 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    One of Eureka’s water treatment facilities MGX Minerals and Eureka Resources are planning a joint venture to extract lithium from water produced at non-conventional oil and gas sites in eastern US.

    he pair signed a letter of intent to form an exclusive JV, planning to use MGX's "rapid lithium extraction technology" at Eureka's treatment plants to recover the battery material ingredient. 

    Eureka said it converted 10,000 barrels a day of "produced water", from oil and gas operators in the Marcellus and Utica shale formations, into valuable co-products including fresh water and high-purity sodium chloride. 

    "Through this joint venture, Eureka will begin extracting lithium as well," the companies said. 

    MGX president and CEO Jared Lazerson said the JV would not only look to install an initial rapid recovery system immediately but viewed it as "the first step in executing the strategic vision of petrolithium". 

    "The extraction of lithium from oil and gas well sources is a broad paradigm shift for the energy sector," he said.

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here.


  • 07 Mar 2019 4:35 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    JUNIOR producer Jadestone Energy has released its 2019 guidance ahead of announcing its full year results, and expects its overall production rates to triple thanks to its recent acquisition of the Montara oil field in offshore Western Australia.

    Jadestone secured 100% of Montara from PTTTEP recently, adding it to the Stag field in northwest Western Australia and its pre-development and exploration assets in Vietnam and parts of Southeast Asia.  

    Average Montara production over the last month reached a rate of 15,369 barrels of oil per day, following some flush production from Montara's restart and continued natural flow from the Skua-11 and Swift-2 wells.  

    Average unit production from both Montara and Stag costs between US$21-24 per barrel, the junior reported.  

    Jadestone estimates this year oil output across its producing assets will average between 13,500-15,500bopd. 

    "Following our acquisition of the Montara asset, offshore Australia, we have tripled production, all of it high quality and premium-priced oil from offshore Australia, and are making good progress on a significant development project in Vietnam, which we expect to sanction this year," Jadestone CEO Paul Blakeley said.  

    "As we increase our influence and control over the Montara asset, in preparation for taking over operatorship, we are identifying more opportunities to generate value for shareholders, including innovative ways to add reserves and resources, while optimising both production rates and operating costs."

     Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here.


  • 07 Mar 2019 4:12 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)
    The second quarterly update on implementation is now available to view online.

    This second report provides detail on the status of implementation as at 31 December 2018. The staged approach to implementation of the recommendations is provided in a narrative format under the six reform areas listed in the Implementation Plan:

    • Strengthening Regulation
    • Ensuring Accountable Industry Practice
    • Safeguarding Water and the Environment
    • Respecting Community and Culture
    • Maximising Regional Benefits and Local Opportunities
    • Planning for Industry
    To read the second quarterly report and updates on the implementation of all recommendations, please visit Hydraulic Fracturing Progress.

    The Independent Officer overseeing the implementation of the recommendations, Dr David Ritchie, has provided comment on the progress of implementation of the recommendations outlined in the quarterly report. Read Dr Ritchie’s advice 
    here

    The third Onshore Shale Gas Community and Business Reference Group (CBRG) meeting will be held in March 2019. The meeting will include:
    • Web Presentation by Marcellus Center for Outreach & Research, USA, about lessons from the industry development in the USA;
    • Presentation by industry representatives about exploration plans for 2019; and
    • Progress report on implementation of recommendations, detailed briefing and feedback on policy issues
    The CBRG meets 4 times per year and includes representatives from the community, environmental groups, local business, the gas industry, land councils and local government.

    The chair of the CBRG can be contacted via email at 
    Cbreference.group@nt.gov.au

    A copy of the communique for the third CBRG meeting will be available online following the meeting. Read the communiques of previous meetings here

    To read more about the legislative changes that have been progressed to date, please visit Community Bulletin 12

    To read the latest from the NTG Newsroom, please visit 
    NTG Newsroom

    To read the Implementation Plan or access additional information regarding the progress of implementation, please visit hydraulicfracturing.nt.gov.au To read the Inquiry report and recommendations, please visit frackinginquiry.nt.gov.au

    Contact the Hydraulic Fracturing Inquiry Implementation Taskforce at hydraulic.fracturing@nt.gov.au


  • 07 Mar 2019 9:55 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Minister Paul Kirby

    Applications are open for the latest round of collaborative grants for exploration drilling and geophysics in the Northern Territory, an NT Government initiative which will help to create jobs and provide economic benefits.

    The Geophysics and Drilling Collaborations program provides collaborative funding of 50 per cent for up to $125,000 per project of the total costs for drilling and geophysical programs by industry. The projects must be in areas of the NT where there is a lack of geological information.

    The collaborative grants program is part of the Northern Territory Government’s $26 million Resourcing the Territory initiative, which includes geoscience and industry stimulus programs to maximise resources exploration in the NT.

    With an aim to address gaps in the critical understanding of the geology of the NT, the collaborative grants program will encourage projects that may open up new areas for exploration and ensure the data is made available to the wider exploration community.

    Now up to its 12th round of collaborative grants, 2018 saw a record number of applicants received for the program, with 15 projects from 12 different companies potentially receiving more than $1 million in funding.

    The Geophysics and Drilling Collaboration project funding is for programs to be undertaken during 2019, and applications will close on 15 April 2019. Guidelines and assessment criteria can be found at www.minerals.nt.gov.au/collaborations.

    Quotes from Minister for Primary Industry and Resources, Paul Kirby:

    “The Territory Labor Government’s number one priority is jobs.

     “Initiatives like this increase the Territory’s profile as a resources investment destination and will bring in investment and exploration expenditure.

    “Research shows the economic return on programs like this is ten times more than what the NT Government spends on the initiatives themselves.”

    Media Contact: Carl Pfeiffer 0417 910 720


  • 01 Mar 2019 4:52 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Regulatory Reform of Petroleum Activities

    Regulatory reform of the onshore gas industry reached an important milestone on Wednesday (27 February 2019) with the Minister for Environment and Natural Resources (the Minister) assuming responsibility for environmental regulation of the onshore petroleum industry. 

    This recent change to the Administrative Arrangement Order, has occurred in accordance with Recommendation 14.34 of the Final Report:


     

    That prior to the grant of any further exploration approvals, in order to ensure independence and accountability, there must be a clear separation between the agency with responsibility for regulating the environmental impacts and risks associated with any onshore shale gas industry and the agency responsible for promoting that industry.

     

    With this change, the Minister now holds responsibility for approval of and compliance with Environment Management Plans (EMPs), the primary environmental approval for petroleum activities under the Petroleum (Environment) Regulations 2016, and the environmental harm offences within Part V Division 2 of the Petroleum Act 1984.

    Government remains committed to implementing all 135 recommendations in the Final Report from the Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the Northern Territory and this separation of responsibilities delivers on a key recommendation of the Final Report.

    Petroleum companies with granted petroleum interests (such as Exploration Permits or Production Licences) are required to submit an EMP for assessment and the Minister must approve the EMP before any regulated activities can occur. Regulated activities are defined in the Petroleum (Environment) Regulations 2016 as activities which have an environmental impact or environmental risk and include seismic surveys, drilling of wells and hydraulic fracturing.

    The Minister for Primary Industry and Resources will continue to hold responsibility for all tenure related matters under the Petroleum Act 1984, petroleum resource management and operational approvals including well operations.

    Having a clear separation between the Minister promoting the Industry and the Minister responsible for regulating environmental impacts of the Industry will ensure the Territory has a robust and transparent regulatory framework that enables the onshore gas industry to develop in a manner that protects the environment and provides certainty to industry and the community.

    Since October 2018, a number of Legislative and administrative changes have been progressed, including;

     
    • Water Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 passed through the parliament that will ensure that the requirement for water licensing and permits to access water resources will apply to mining and petroleum activities; along with updating offences and penalties (recommendation 7.1);
    • Passing of the Environment Protection Authority Amendment Bill 2018, providing the Northern Territory Environment Protection Authority (NTEPA) additional members with specialist skills and experience in the assessment and management of the environmental impacts of onshore gas development, positioned to deliver independent expert advice to the Minister for Environment to inform decision making (Recommendation 14.34);
    • Introduction of the Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 to the Legislative Assembly in November 2018, with proposed amendments to ensure petroleum companies, as applicants, are ‘fit and proper’ to hold exploration permits or production licences (Recommendation 14.12); providing provisions for open standing for judicial review for decisions made under the Petroleum Act 1984 and Petroleum (Environment) Regulations 2016 (Recommendation 14.23); and ability to ensure codes of practice that are established are enforceable by law and that companies can be penalised if they do not abide by them (recommendation 5.1); The Scrutiny Committee report is due 12 March 2019; and
    • The amendments to Petroleum (Environment) Regulations 2016 ensure that all draft Environment Management Plans for the drilling of petroleum wells and hydraulic fracturing activities, must be published in print and online and available for public comment prior to Ministerial approval, and that all comments made on draft Environment Management Plans must be published online (recommendation 14.15); that cumulative impacts are given consideration (recommendation 14.19); that all notices and reports of environmental incidents and reportable incidents are published online (recommendation 14.16); and that hydraulic fracturing fluids proposed to be used are disclosed and published and flowback and produced water composition must be reported and published (recommendation 7.10).
     
    Territorians will now have the opportunity to comment on Environment Management Plans for drilling of petroleum wells and hydraulic fracturing before they are considered by Government. The Minister will be bound by law to consider the comments before making a decision to approve or refuse the Environment Management Plan.

    An Environment Management Plan will only be approved if the Minister for Environment and Natural Resources is satisfied that certain approval criteria have been met.  Click here to access the fact sheet about Environment Management Plans.

    To read more about the legislative changes that have been progressed to date, please visit 
    Community Bulletins
    To access the Administrative Arrangements Order, please click here
    To read the latest from the NTG Newsroom, please visit NTG Newsroom

    To read the Implementation Plan or access additional information regarding the progress of implementation, please visit hydraulicfracturing.nt.gov.au

    To read the Inquiry report and recommendations, please visit frackinginquiry.nt.gov.au

    Contact the Hydraulic Fracturing Inquiry Implementation Taskforce at hydraulic.fracturing@nt.gov.au


  • 28 Feb 2019 5:53 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    REMOTE power specialist Zenith Energy has secured $40 million in additional corporate debt facilties two days after releasing half-year results that showed growth from its move from engineering, procurement, construction specialist to a build, own, operate model. 

    The money will be used on capital expenditure on new and existing projects, with some left over for acquisitions and general corporate spend.  

    The company has been able to gain an overall reduction in associated funding costs as well as the extend the debt maturity date.  

    Yesterday the company announced it had received certification of full diesel completion after satisfying diesel performance testing requirements at the 62 megawatt power station it built for Newmont Mining's; Tanami gold mine.  

    It will now begin commissioning the Wartsila gas generation capacity before testing the full completion performance testing in the weeks to follow.  

    Meanwhile during its half year results of Tuesday it reported 61% growth in BOO megawatt  growth over the previous corresponding period, a 53% growth in BOO revenue compared to the last period, 123% growth in BOO EBITDA, and 19% growth in total megawatts under control from 395MW to 428MW over the period.  

    Group net profit after tax was down $4.8 million compared with the previous period thanks to what Zenith calls a "refocus on growing BOO operations".  

     PP&E increased from $76 million in the second half of financial 2018 to $114 million in the first half of this financial year and inventory increased fro $700,000 to $12 million 

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here.


  • 22 Feb 2019 5:50 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    SANTOS yesterday released its climate change report for 2019, the same day it released its full year 2018 financial report, and put its case for a low carbon future with a focus on gas and a goal of becoming completely emissions free by 2050. This is the company’s second climate change report.

    The company's vision is to be Australia's leading onshore gas company by 2025 and grow its gas portfolio "safely and sustainably, in partnership with communities," and in tandem play a leading role in the reducing global emissions.  

    Santos said its strategy is economically resilient under all of the International Energy Agency's Energy Technology Perspectives 2017 scenarios.  

    "Our climate change policy fits with both our vision to be Australia's leading onshore natural gas company by 2050, and with our purpose to provide sustainable returns for shareholders by supplying reliable, affordable, clean natural gas to improve the lives of people in Australia and Asia," Santos managing director and CEO Kevin Gallagher said.  

    The report outlines the company's three medium-term carbon targets, which it expects will be achieved by 2025, centring on the role of gas in reducing emissions.  

    "The three targets look to reduce emissions from our operated activities and work on step-change technologies with the potential to provide significant carbon offset opportunities."  

    Target one is the ‘Reduction of global emissions through LNG export growth' and will see the company grow LNG gas exports to at least 4.5 million tonnes per annum by 2025 to "contribute to the growing demand for clean gas" and will displace the equivalent of 15% of Australia's total cumulative coal emission reduction target over the next five years.  

    The company said that overall, Australian LNG exports could reduce global emissions by up to 300 million tonnes of carbon dioxide per year three times that of Australia's annual emission reduction target under the Paris Agreement.  

    Target two will be to economically reduce emissions from the company's base operations by more than 5% across existing sites in the Cooper Basin and Queensland.  

    This equates to approximately 400,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per annum. 

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here.



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