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Northern Territory

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  • 04 Aug 2021 10:44 AM | Stephanie Berlin (Administrator)

    To continue to drive investment and achieve a $40 billion economy by 2030, the Territory Labor Government has announced a new partnership to accelerate the Territory’s battery materials and manufacturing industry. 

    The $500,000 investment will see the Government work with the Future Battery Industries Cooperative Research Centre (FBICRC) over a four year period.

    The partnership will see the Territory participate in industry research, which will better inform investors about the Territory’s capabilities and battery value chain – the steps involved in manufacturing, distributing and selling batteries to end users. 

    It will play an important role in identifying the Territory’s best opportunities to capitalise in an emerging domestic and global market, and link us with the best partners to grow local business and manufacturing.

    This initiative is a key part of the Territory’s strengthened approach to winning investment and supporting economic growth. It will play a significant step in supporting the development of new mines and new manufacturing industry.

    The FBICRC benefits from the shared knowledge of 60 participants who combined have contributed in excess of $120 million, key insights and a joint approach to solving key technical and market development challenges in growing new battery industries in Australia from mining to manufacture to recycling and re-use, as well as tackling critical topics like sustainability and responsible sourcing.

    The battery industry has been identified as an opportunity to add value to the Territory’s abundant natural resources and leverage its proximity to export markets throughout the Indo-Pacific.

    Analysts have forecast an increase in the global demand for batteries as the world moves towards 2030 and 2050 emissions reduction goals.

    From:

    Michael Gunner - Chief Minister of the Northern Territory

    Eva Lawler - Minister for Renewables and Energy

  • 03 Aug 2021 11:46 AM | Stephanie Berlin (Administrator)

    Alice Springs residents can now access an online power demand forecast that provides awareness and visibility on their local power system.

    The Alice Springs Demand Forecast provides Power and Water’s System Control with an additional tool to help manage power system volatility.

    The rapid uptake of solar by households and businesses is already delivering cheaper, cleaner power right across the Territory.

    This increase in behind-the-meter solar and the impending connection of new large-scale solar projects to the grid means new investments and policies are required to maintain the stability of the power system.

    Being able to accurately predict output of solar generators and behind the meter installations will give System Control the ability to better plan and manage the system to maintain system security and stability.

    It will further allow System Control to better manage the impacts of increasing renewable generation across the Alice Springs region by forecasting power system demand every five minutes.

    The enhanced power system visibility benefits both Power and Water and Territory Generation power system operations, and supports control room operators to make more informed real-time decisions to improve power system security.

    In addition, this achieves Recommendation 2a and 2b of the Utilities Commission Independent Investigation of Alice Springs System Black Incident on 13 October 2019; whereby Power and Water and Territory Generation were required to jointly report to the Utilities Commission on a plan to implement improved solar forecasting, and for the solar forecasting data to be held by the party responsible for maintaining spinning reserve.

    To view the new Alice Springs Solar Forecasting Tool visit https://ntesmo.com.au/

    From Eva Lawler - Minister for Essential Services, Renewables and Energy.

  • 02 Aug 2021 11:40 AM | Stephanie Berlin (Administrator)

    Clearing works are now complete as part of construction on Jabiru’s new power station.

    The project is part of the Territory Labor Government’s $135.5 million dollar commitment to the Future of Jabiru and Kakadu.

    The new power station is being constructed and operated by Energy Developments Pty Ltd (EDL), a global leader in remote renewables, and it will meet the Government’s targets of 50 per cent renewable energy by 2030.

    During the land clearing process, local Djurrubu Rangers were employed to assist with cultural heritage management and environmental protection during site clearing and preparation.

    The clearing work provided a great opportunity for EDL and contractors to work with Traditional Owners.

    Construction works are now underway, with the diesel generators scheduled to come online by the end of 2021 and the solar farm in early 2022.

    The project will continue to create jobs and business opportunities for Territorians, having spent $1.75 million with local businesses to date.

    Once completed, works will ensure secure, reliable and affordable electricity for Jabiru businesses and residents.

    The new hybrid power station will deliver at least 50 per cent of its electricity over its lifetime from its 3.9 megawatt solar array.

    The power station is expected to be up and running by the end of 2021 and fully commissioned by February 2022.

    From:

    Michael Gunner - Chief Minister of the Northern Territory

    Lawrence Costa - Member for Arafura

  • 21 Jul 2021 4:51 PM | Stephanie Berlin (Administrator)

    Hydraulic Fracturing Implementation Progress Update Nov 2020 to Apr 2021

    This progress update provides detail on the status of implementation from 1 November 2020 to 30 April 2021. There are 135 recommendations in total, however three of the recommendations were separated at the time of implementation planning, resulting in a total of 138 recommendations to be reported on.+

    As at 30 April 2021, 64 of the 138 total recommendations were fully complete. Updates to the implementation status of individual recommendations can be found by clicking on the relevant recommendations

    Highlights from the progress achieved in the six month reporting period and next steps align to the following four key areas of implementation and reform and are summarised below:

    • The Strategic Regional Environmental Baseline Assessment (SREBA) for the Beetaloo Sub-Basin
    • Regulation and Assessment
    • Completing implementation of the Inquiry recommendations
    • Information management and community engagement.
    Updates on implementation of recommendations from the Final Report of the Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing are available on the Hydraulic Fracturing website.

    1. SREBA
    2. Regulation and Assessment
    3. Completing implementation of Inquiry recommendations
    4. Information Management and Community Engagement


    Independent Oversight of the Hydraulic Fracturing Implementation Progress update Nov 2020 to Apr 2021

    The role of the Independent Overseer is to provide the Chief Minister and NT Government with independent advice on how the implementation of the recommendations from the Inquiry is progressing and being managed. The nature of this role requires the Independent Officer to remain at arms-length from day-to-day decisions and processes relating to implementation.

    The Chief Minister approved the extension of Dr Ritchie’s term as Independent Overseer until 31 December 2021 to see out implementation of Hydraulic Fracturing Inquiry recommendations.

    Dr David Ritchie, has provided comment on the progress of implementation outlined in the latest six-monthly update.

    Overall, Dr Ritchie found that implementation continues satisfactorily in accordance with the findings of the Inquiry.

    Read Dr Ritchie’s full advice on the
    Hydraulic Fracturing website

    To contact the Independent Officer, email Dr David Ritchie at independent.oversight@nt.gov.au

    What’s next?

    The NT Government is progressing from stage two to stage three of the Implementation Plan for most of the Hydraulic Fracturing Inquiry recommendations. Stage three recommendations are mostly relating to larger projects that are anticipated to be delivered by December 2022. Progress updates will be announced through six-monthly community bulletins as Stage 3 of the Implementation Plan continues.

    Want to find out more?

    To find out about opportunities to engage in consultation or to keep up to date with status of implementation of each recommendations, sign up for regular updates on the website: www.hydraulicfracturing.nt.gov.au by email:
    hydraulic.fracturing@nt.gov.au


    Please direct all correspondence to:
    Hydraulic Fracturing Inquiry Implementation Taskforce
    GPO Box 4396, Darwin NT 0801
    T 08 8999 6573
    E hydraulic.fracturing@nt.gov.au
    W hydraulicfracturing.nt.gov.au


  • 11 May 2021 3:19 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Social, Cultural and Economic SREBA Studies Scope of Works awarded

    The Strategic Regional Environmental and Baseline Assessment (SREBA) Social, Cultural and Economic studies were key recommendations from the Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the Northern Territory. It is an important piece of work that continues to be a priority for Government as implementation of remaining recommendations progresses.

    Following an original open tender process carried out in mid-2020, the NT Government has recently engaged The University of Queensland (UQ) through a direct procurement process to complete the Scope of Works for the Social, Cultural and Economic Studies and Strategic Regional Assessment.

    UQ has a skilled and interdisciplinary team, with highly-experienced academics who will be leading this work.  Based in QLD, UQ has committed to working together with NT-based researchers and practitioners, including within regional and remote Aboriginal communities. Likewise, many of the team members have a long history of applied inter-cultural research within the NT.  For additional accountability and to ensure this work is of the highest standard UQ will establish an Expert Advisory Panel.  UQ researchers are committed to principles of integrity, impartiality, accountability and transparency in the conduct of this work.

    The UQ team has been responsible for the development of novel and leading edge approaches, frameworks and toolkits on previous and similar projects in Australia and internationally. They also have a particularly strong background in inter-cultural research and collaborative methods of working with communities and other stakeholders.

    The Scope of Works will require approval by an accredited Human Research Ethics Committee, a process UQ is experienced in. This UQ ethics process ensures that the project remains independent. The final Scope of Works will be presented to the Minister for Environment for approval prior to progressing to the next procurement stage of the studies.

    UQ expects the work associated with developing the Scope of Works including re-engaging with stakeholders to recommence in May 2021.

    Please direct all correspondence to:
    Hydraulic Fracturing Inquiry Implementation Taskforce
    GPO Box 4396, Darwin NT 0801
    T 08 8999 6573
    hydraulic.fracturing@nt.gov.au 
    hydraulicfracturing.nt.gov.au 


  • 27 Apr 2021 4:08 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Beetaloo Regional Reference Group – meeting two Communique

    Meeting Two

    Date: Tuesday, 23 March 2021

    Attendees: in person and online nominated representatives of: Barkly Regional Council, Northern Land Council, Katherine Town Council, Roper Gulf Regional Council, Territory Natural Resource Management, Sturt Plateau Best Practice Group, NT Farmers Association, Department of Environment, Parks and Water Security (DEPWS) staff, Department of Chief Minister and Cabinet (CM&C) staff.

    Apologies: Sunrise Health and Territory Resource Services Association.

    Purpose
    The Beetaloo Regional Reference Group (BRRG) is a consultative forum for community views regarding, and providing input into, the Strategic Regional Environmental and Baseline Assessment (SREBA) studies within the Beetaloo Region.

    Meeting one

    On 14 December 2020, an initial BRRG was held via video conference to introduce members, organise administrative matters and review the Terms of Reference.

    Presentations from SREBA study teams
    • Terrestrial ecosystems studies
    • Water quality and quantity studies
    • Aquatic ecosystems studies
    Discussion on presentations
    • Need for a clear definition that a ‘baseline assessment’ refers to a specific point in time.
    • Baseline report will be made available to stakeholders.
    • A public portal will be made available collating layers of data for use by the community, not solely for gas development purposes but the whole region as it is of interest for economic development.  It will be hosted on the POINT website which was recently established.
    • Spatial layers should be exportable from portal to allow for use by stakeholders.
    • SREBA findings will contribute to Water Allocation Planning.
    • Ensure a planned, coordinated approach to limit duplication of baseline collection and engagement.
    • Previous work undertaken for programs such as Gas Industry Social & Environment Research Alliance (GISERA) and Geological and Bioregional Assessment (GBA) Program are being incorporated where appropriate, with some researchers from these programs also working on specialist SREBA studies.
    Progress and updates
    • A SREBA engagement strategy is being developed and a draft will be shared with the BRRG for feedback and advice.
    • Scopes of work for the terrestrial ecosystem and the water quality and quantity studies are in the final drafting phase.
    • Aquatic ecosystem studies scope of works is in development.
    • Methane and greenhouse gas studies are being developed by CSIRO and the scope of works is expected at the end of April.
    • The social, cultural and economic studies scope of works development will recommence as soon as possible.
    • Environmental health has been awarded to Jacobs Engineering Group (partnering with CSIRO) for the development of the scope of works and is due for completion early June.
    • The scopes of work for each domain are to be approved by the Minister.
    • Planning is underway for the biophysical studies to commence early dry season 2021.
    Other business
    • Chair invited members to nominate guest speakers to attend the BRRG meetings to aid in sharing and gathering information.
    • Concern raised about the consistency between Commonwealth Government messaging around onshore gas development and Northern Territory Government messaging on environmental protection.
    • NLC has had meetings with DEPWS and CM&C regarding assessments of cultural impacts and the design of cultural assessments in consultation with land councils and Traditional Owners (TOs).
    • Chair asked if there were local stakeholders missing from the group which was followed with a discussion regarding the representation of traditional owners on the BRRG, however the group as a whole concluded that the NLC has the role and responsibility for representing local TOs.
    • NLC advised they are already doing consultations about onshore gas and have information meetings happening. They are happy to assist/include other cultural assessment and data collection groups to ensure a targeted approach is actioned to avoid over consultation and confusion within the community.
    • More public communication is required about potential onshore gas developments in the NT.
    View the BRRG meeting two presentation PDF (8.0 MB)  


  • 11 Apr 2021 12:07 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Materials and energy are at the heart of manufacturing. Modernising how we use them is central to building an advanced manufacturing economy.

    Australian manufacturers are well positioned to use our unique natural, industrial and competitive advantages. We can take advantage of this opportunity by combining:

    • innovation
    • abundant clean energy
    • material resources
    • onshore industrial base.

    Learn more about the Recycling and Clean Energy Manufacturing road map 

    Clean Energy info is now available on the website. 


  • 06 Apr 2021 9:39 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    The Territory Labor Government is today announcing its strengthened strategy for winning private investment, turbo charging major projects and growing the NT economy.

    Two new leaders – the Territory Investment Commissioner and Major Projects Commissioner - will be appointed. They will have a broad investment mandate and will become key links between industry and government. Each will report directly to the Chief Minister, and have the authority to make recommendations to Ministers and present to Cabinet.

    They will each oversee focussed teams of about 10 specialist staff from Investment Territory, with other surge staff to pivot between the two teams. 

    The commissioners and their teams will build on the work Investment Territory has done over the past 18 months, and actively pursue the investment and business reform needed to achieve the NT Government’s goal of a $40 billion economy by 2030.

    The Territory Investment Commissioner will also oversee a new $5 million fund to partner with industry to find new investment opportunities in the Territory in target sectors such as advanced manufacturing, renewable energy and digital industries.

    Investment attraction will have a single and accountable lead with a bolstered team. The Territory Investment Commissioner and their team will go to the market and win private investment for the Territory.

    The Major Projects Commissioner will be the point of coordination for major projects and make it easier for businesses to navigate approvals and create Territory jobs. The Major Projects Commissioner will recommend additional legislative changes where necessary to make it easier to deliver projects, and will identify legislative powers required to support their role, if needed. The Major Projects Commissioner will oversee the creation and operation of sustainable development precincts, and will chair the newly formed Land Development Corporation Board.

    Both commissioners will provide monthly progress reports to the Chief Minister and twice-yearly reports to Cabinet. An annual report card on the activities and deliverables of each role will be publicly released.

    These roles are being created today. They will be advertised this week. They will be filled immediately with interim appointments to act from today.

    From the Office of the Chief Minister

  • 30 Mar 2021 3:38 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Santos, as operator of the Barossa joint venture, today announced a final investment decision (FID) has been taken to proceed with the US$3.6 billion gas and condensate project, located offshore the Northern Territory.

    Barossa FID also kick-starts the US$600 million investment in the Darwin LNG life extension and pipeline tie-in projects, which will extend the facility life for around 20 years. The Santos-operated Darwin LNG plant has the capacity to produce approximately 3.7 million tonnes of LNG per annum.

    Barossa is one of the lowest cost, new LNG supply projects in the world and will give Santos and Darwin LNG a competitive advantage in a tightening global LNG market. The project represents the biggest investment in Australia’s oil and gas sector since 2012.

    Santos Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Kevin Gallagher said FID on Barossa was consistent with Santos’ strategy for disciplined growth utilising existing infrastructure around the company’s core assets.

    “Our strategy to grow around our five core asset hubs has not changed since 2016. As we enter this next growth phase, we will remain disciplined in managing our major project costs, consistent with our low-cost operating model,” Mr Gallagher said.

    “As the economy re-emerges from the COVID-19 lockdowns, these job-creating and sustaining projects are critical for Australia, also unlocking new business opportunities and export income for the nation. The Barossa and Darwin life extension projects are good for the economy and good for local jobs and business opportunities in the Northern Territory.

    “Barossa and Darwin LNG life extension will create 600 jobs throughout the construction phase and secure 350 jobs for the next 20 years of production at the Darwin LNG facility.

    “Less than a year since we completed the acquisition of ConocoPhillips’ northern Australia and Timor-Leste assets and despite the global economic impact of a once-in-a-hundred-year pandemic, it is a great achievement to have extended the life of Bayu-Undan following the approval of the infill drilling program and now to have taken FID on the Barossa project. I’d like to thank the Australian, Northern Territory and Timor-Leste governments, our joint venture partners and our customers for their support.

    “I am delighted to welcome our Barossa joint venture partner SK E&S as a partner in Bayu-Undan and Darwin LNG and appreciate their support for today’s Barossa development decision.”

    The Barossa development will comprise a Floating Production, Storage and Offloading (FPSO) vessel, subsea production wells, supporting subsea infrastructure and a gas export pipeline tied into the existing Bayu-Undan to Darwin LNG pipeline. First gas production is targeted for the first half of 2025.

    At the end of last year, Santos announced the tolling arrangements had been finalised for Barossa gas to be processed through Darwin LNG and that Santos had signed a long-term LNG sales agreement with Diamond Gas International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Mitsubishi Corporation, for 1.5 million tonnes of Santos-equity LNG for 10 years with extension options.

    Santos has also signed Memoranda of Understanding with SK E&S and Mitsubishi to jointly investigate opportunities for carbon-neutral LNG from Barossa, including collaboration relating to Santos’ Moomba CCS project, bilateral agreements for carbon credits and potential future development of zero-emissions hydrogen.

    “We will continue to explore the potential for carbon-neutral LNG from Barossa as part of our commitment to lower global emissions and as a company, reach our net-zero emissions target by 2040,” Mr Gallagher said.

    Barossa FID is the final condition required for completion of the 25 per cent equity sell-downs in Darwin LNG and Bayu-Undan to SK E&S, which is also a partner in Barossa. Completion of the SK transaction is expected to occur at the end of April and result in net funds to Santos of approximately US$200 million, being the sale price of US$390 million less the forecast cashflows from the 25 per cent interests from the effective date of 1 October 2019 to completion.

    Santos and JERA continue to progress the binding sale and purchase agreement for JERA to acquire a 12.5 per cent interest in Barossa.

    Completion of the sell-downs to SK E&S and JERA will see Santos’ interests in Bayu-Undan and Darwin LNG change to 43.4 per cent, and in the Barossa project to 50 per cent.

    The Barossa investment decision will see approximately 380 million barrels of oil equivalent resources commercialised to 2P reserves at Santos’ expected 50 per cent interest in the project following the sell-down to JERA.

    https://www.santos.com/news/santos-announces-fid-on-the-barossa-gas-project-for-darwin-lng/ 

  • 30 Mar 2021 2:15 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)
    Information and data about onshore petroleum activities in the Northern Territory (NT) is now easily accessible through a new online portal called POINT .

    POINT is a free mapping tool that includes information relating to proposed and approved activities, including environmental approvals, environment management plans, monitoring data and compliance.

    The portal also includes details about:
    • Our regulatory framework
    • Environment compliance reporting
    • Industry codes of practice and guidelines
    • Geological regions (Basins and Sub-basins)
    • Petroleum titles
    • Petroleum wells
    • Companies with petroleum interests
    • Groundwater monitoring data
    • Related information and resources
    POINT is compatible with existing mapping software such as STRIKE  and NR MAPS .

    A user guide is built into POINT to help you navigate your way across each of the 7 working modes (buttons) that automatically adjust the map layers and search functions.

    The portal works well on PCs, tablets and mobile devices and includes a full list of definitions to help people unfamiliar with the content better understand the information being presented.

    POINT contributes to the Government’s commitment of ensuring transparency in the development and regulation of the onshore petroleum industry so that the environment and jobs are protected.

    Notifying the community that EMPs are open for public comment
    The Department of Environment, Parks and Water Security (DEPWS) is improving the way it publishes onshore petroleum 
    environment management plans  (EMPs) to ensure it reaches a wider audience.

    Under the Petroleum (Environment) Regulations 2016, the Minister for Environment must publish environment management plans relating to drilling or hydraulic fracturing, along with a notice that the plan has been published.

    Previously, notices about the plans have been placed in local newspapers.

    Moving forward, all notices will now be advertised on the 
    NT Government’s Have Your Say website 

    Publishing the notice on Have Your Say is expected to reach a wider audience and increase public awareness that EMPs have been published for comment

    Environment Management Plans have always been and will continue to be published on DEPWS website.

    The benefits of this approach are that:
    • The notice is available online for the full 28 day period that the EMPs are published online:
      • an online notice will ensure a much wider distribution when compared to local newspapers
      • any person that has subscribed to the Have Your Say website will receive a notification that a notice has been published about a new EMP
      • any person that has subscribed to this Community Bulletin will also receive the same notice that goes onto the Have Your Say website, i.e. there is an EMP out for comment.
    Onshore gas companies will still be required to engage with stakeholders, including land councils and pastoralists, before they submit an Environment Management Plan to the Minister.

    A notice with the above information has also been published in various NT newspapers.


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