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Northern Territory

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  • 04 Sep 2020 11:58 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Nominations are open for the 2020 Chief Minister's NT Export and Industry Awards presented by Chamber of Commerce NT. 

    This year the Awards will give recognition to our NT exporters and industry leaders who have shown resilience and adapted quickly in response to COVID19 and the restrictions and economic crisis that it has brought with it. Finalists and winners will be celebrated at a gala dinner presentation on 6 November.

    Export Award categories include Agribusiness and Food, Technology and Innovation, Natural Resources and Related Services, Business Services and Support, International Education and Training, Frontline Business, Regional Business and more.      

    Local Industry Awards include: Manufacturing Industry, Resource Supply and Service, Indigenous Business, Industry Innovation and more. 

    Nominations are open until midnight Monday 14 September and we encourage you to nominate resilient Territory businesses!

    For more information and to download a nomination form, visit https://www.chambernt.com.au/ibc-content/export-awards   


  • 04 Sep 2020 11:55 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    SREBA studies update

    The NT Government has determined that a Strategic Regional Environmental and Baseline assessment (SREBA) is required for the Beetaloo Sub-basin, in accordance with recommendations from the Independent Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing.

    The Framework and technical guidance notes for each of the studies can be found at 
    here. There are six domains that comprise a SREBA, which are all at different stages of progression and are detailed below. A SREBA must be completed before any production approvals for unconventional gas activity occurs.

    Social, Cultural and Economic Baseline Studies and Strategic Regional Assessment
    Circle Advisory has been appointed to carry out independent studies in the Social, Cultural and Economic domain as a part of the SREBA for the Beetaloo Sub-basin.

    Initial engagement and stakeholder contact to co-design a scope of works for the Social, Cultural and Economic studies is commencing this week.

    Over the next three months, Circle will be talking to people and organisations throughout the region about what should be measured and how people might want to be involved in these studies. Circle will also be available to meet and talk with people when they visit local towns and communities during the development of the scope of works.

    The full baseline studies will commence next year, once the scope of works has been developed and approved by the Minister for Environment and Natural Resources.

    Progress updates for the remaining five SREBA domains in the Beetaloo Sub-basin
    • Terrestrial studies: Detailed environmental mapping has been undertaken in the Beetaloo as part of the Geological and Bioregional Assessment (GBA) program, with further ecological studies as part of the SREBA to commence later this year, once the scope of works is agreed.
    • Aquatic studies: Some work has been undertaken as part of the GBA, with further studies under SREBA to commence later this year once the scope of works is agreed.
    • Water studies: Some groundwater studies have been undertaken as part of the GBA program, and the development of a scope of works for further surface and groundwater studies under SREBA is well underway.
    • Greenhouse gas studies: Initial baseline assessments were undertaken in the region during 2018-2019, with further work to commence later this year in order to build a more comprehensive baseline.
    • Environmental health studies : A call for tenders for the design and development of the environmental health studies will be released in the coming days.

    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 


  • 02 Sep 2020 12:07 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    THE federal government will provide A$37 million for two new electricity generation projects in the Top End, a 12-megawatt gas-fired power plant in Darwin and a 10MW solar and battery farm near Batchelor, 100 kilometres south of Darwin.

    The government will provide Merricks Capital the funds via its Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility, taking the value of approved projects from the facility to $830 million. 

    The NAIF financing mechanism is provided at a fixed rate with interest rates and payback periods determined separately for each individual project. 

    "These new energy projects will help modernise Darwin's energy grid networks and reduce reliance on older and less efficient gas and diesel generators," resources minister Keith Pitt said in a statement. 

    He said the two projects would link up with existing transmission infrastructure between Darwin and Katherine, and will supply up to 90% of future electricity generation needs for the Northern Territory's largest energy retailer Rimfire.

    The Hudson Creek power station and the Batchelor Solar and Battery Farm would create around 160 new jobs during the construction phase, according to the government. 

    Under the funding agreement, Merricks will also work with the Larrakia National Aboriginal Corporation to deliver a range of initiatives which the government said included cross-cultural awareness training to employees and contracts. 

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here


  • 02 Sep 2020 12:01 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Hydrogen and hydrogen-related technologies represent the next big energy opportunity for Australia

    Australia is well-positioned to play a leading role in the emerging hydrogen energy market, having the resources, infrastructure, proximity and established trade relationships with key markets in Asia, and demonstrated know-how to reliably, safely and efficiently scale production and export of technology, capability and energy resources.

    With the right focus on high value skills and commercialising intellectual property, an Australian hydrogen industry could conservatively produce an increase to Australian Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of up to $11 billion on a Net Present Value (NPV) basis and 7,600 jobs by 2050 [1]. This includes a range of technical and trade occupations, with many of these in regional areas.

    Australia’s National Hydrogen Strategy (NHS) [2] outlines the nation’s path to becoming a global hydrogen player, through building a strong domestic hydrogen sector that will underpin Australia's exporting capabilities. The NHS supports NERA to lead the establishment of a National Hydrogen Cluster to help grow capabilities and drive industry collaboration across the hydrogen value chain and ensure that Australian companies are well placed to supply new technology, products and services to domestic and international markets.

    Developing regional clusters around key hydrogen projects and infrastructure hubs (see: Arup study for COAG Energy Council), or in regions that will service those hubs (e.g. metropolitan areas, such as Perth or Brisbane), will help to enhance local cohesion and capability in the hydrogen value chain.

    As part of the National Hydrogen Cluster Consultation Workshops held earlier this year, NERA recognised that in order to establish a successful National Hydrogen Cluster, a bottom-up approach is first required to tap into networks and capabilities that already exist. The consultation workshops were held in each state and territory, including the regional energy centres of Gladstone, Darwin and Karratha, and engaged with almost 300 hydrogen industry professionals across the value chain. To view the findings of this engagement, click here.

    NERA’s Hydrogen Seed Funding Program supports the formation of a network of hydrogen technology clusters around Australia. These clusters can accelerate and optimise the development of hydrogen technology and expertise. Once established, this network of hydrogen clusters will play a central role in connecting to establish the national cluster — which is proposed to operate as a virtual network. The national cluster aims to establish a global identity and a recognised brand for Australian hydrogen technology and expertise, accelerate hydrogen supply chain development, and reduce overlaps and identify gaps in the development, deployment, and commercialisation of new technologies.

    For more information visit: https://www.nera.org.au/regional-hydrogen-technology-clusters 

  • 26 Aug 2020 2:39 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    EMPIRE Energy has raised A$10 million through a placement to fund its upcoming drilling campaign in the Northern Territory’s Beetaloo Sub-basin.

    The placement to institutional and sophisticated investors was offered at 30 cents per share, doubling its cash in the bank to A$20 million. 

    Empire is planning to drill its Carpentaria-1 in permit EP187 next month, using a Schlumberger rig. 

    Empire managing director Alex Underwood said he was "pleased with the strong level of support" from the capital raise. 

    "Empire is now well funded to progress its planned work programs across its extensive holdings in the Beetaloo and McArthur basins," Underwood said. 

    "We believe [our tenement] will create substantial value for our shareholders, broad and sustainable economic benefits to the people of the Northern Territory, and energy security for Australia and the broader region." 

    Civil works, including well pad construction, and water bore drilling began earlier this month. 

    The Carpentaria-1 exploration well will be a vertical well drilled to a depth of 2900 metres and targeting the Velkerri Shale Formation. 

    Contractor InGauge, and Empire Energy, have designed the well to include an extensive evaluation program consisting of coring which will give valuable insight into the geology of the target formations.

    This data would then form the basis of the next phase work program and recoverable volumes of oil, gas and liquids.

    Independent certifiers Netherland Sewell and Associates gave its permit EP187 a best estimate prospective resource of 13.6 trillion cubic feet of gas, with 2.3Tcf in the Velkerri Shale and 14 million barrels of oil equivalent in the Kyalla shale.

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here


  • 25 Aug 2020 2:56 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    ASX-LISTED oil and gas contractor GR Engineering, which provided services to Northern Oil & Gas Australia at the Laminaria and Corallina oilfields in the Timor Sea, has posted a A$9.7 million loss before tax in its full year results today.

    GR Engineering provided services to the now liquidated NOGA for its Northern Endeavour floating production storage and offloading vessel which produced oil from the two fields.

    However, an impairment to its subsidiary Upstream Production Solutions saw writedowns of about $17.6 million when NOGA went bust and ultimately fell into receivership and then liquidation. 

    "The financial year 2020 results were negatively impacted by the impairment of an outstanding receivable owed by Timor Sea Oil & Gas Pty Ltd," GR managing director Geoff Jones said. 

    Timor Sea Oil & Gas was one of four subsidiaries operated by NOGA. 

    Despite the negative impact of the NOGA liquidation the company still posted revenue of $222.4 million with underlying EBITDA of $11.3 million. 

    At June 30 the company had $37.5 million cash in the bank. This was up significantly from the $20.7 million it had in the bank at December 31 2019. 

    Jones called the company's position "well capitalised" and noted its 2021 pipeline of new work was worth around $170 million. 

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here


  • 25 Aug 2020 2:40 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    A RECENT report from the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEFFA) has warned that a lack of government funding along with inaction around policy settings means that Australia could lose its leading position as a future hydrogen powerhouse.

    The report titled Great Expectations followed the unveiling of Europe's Hydrogen Strategy - largely based on green hydrogen production - but focuses on the role that Australia and Asia more broadly will play in the future energy export space. 

    According to IEFFA financial analyst Yong-Liang Por there are around 50 viable hydrogen projects announced over the last financial year, with a total capacity of 4 million tonnes of renewable hydrogen per annum and a power capacity of 50 gigawatts. 

    "The biggest projects are being planned for Australia and the Middle East, as economies of scale are required for export-orientated plants," Yong-Liang Por said. 

    While Australia is poised to take advantage of its proximity to Asian gas markets, there is however a "serious risk" that some projects may fall by the wayside due to "unfavourable economics and a lack of financing" along with government planning. 

    "Governments need to urgently back this industry by developing policy settings encouraging private industry to invest the much needed capital, given the industry must ‘learn by doing'," Por said. 

    Por said Australian policy makers needed to ensure a future hydrogen economy and robust export market based on hydrogen would require transitioning ports from coal to hydrogen. 

    "With the green hydrogen industry still in its infancy, it is important for ports to move quickly to establish themselves as a hydrogen centre through promotion as a usage, production, import and trading hub," Por said in his report. 

    These ports, in Queensland and Western Australia, are already close to potential production sites for hydrogen plants. Key markets would include Japan, Korea and Europe, already important markets for Australia's current energy exports. 

    According to the report, Australia's exports of hydrogen were more likely to come in the form of liquified hydrogen, owing to the country's already well-established LNG expertise and infrastructure. 

    Hydrogen must be stored at minus 253°C versus LNG at minus 163°C, calling for tankers with more sophisticated insulation.

    Creating a large enough fleet in time to beat other countries is ambitious, although IEFFA noted Japan had begun building its first liquified hydrogen gas tanker in December last year. 

    Trials of liquified hydrogen cargoes are expected to begin by March next year. 

    Por noted that Australia had the "most ambitious" hydrogen export plans but initial projects were backed by companies with a "lack of resources" to drive successful completion. 

    This is despite BHP and Woodside Petroleum being shortlisted for the Australian Renewable Energy Agency's $70 million hydrogen funding round. AllianceBernstein noted last week the two were some of the earliest movers in the oiler space

    "In Australia at present, most hydrogen ventures are pilot projects and are regulated on a case-by-case basis without the need for lengthy formal assessment and approval processes," Por said. 

    That said if these pilot projects are successful, it would be likely that public consultation and further assessments would be needed, which would in turn lengthen project delivery schedules. Australia by no means is ready to win the hydrogen export race. 

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here


  • 21 Aug 2020 3:05 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    SANTOS reported a profit drop of almost 50% yesterday and a share price fall of over 4% but CEO Kevin Gallagher charted a way forward even after project deferrals, capital spend cut and write downs.

    This  included confirmation of a three-well infill campaign at the Bayu Undan field first flagged in its second quarter results, which Santos expects to extend the legacy gas field's life out to 2025. 

    Santos will drill two platform wells and one subsea well with sanction planned for the end of the year, Gallagher said.  

    It will be the first campaign drilled with Santos as operator of the offshore asset, which is now fully under Timor-Leste jurisdiction since the small nation ratified the maritime boundary treaty with Australia last year.  

    It will also provide ongoing revenue to the nation given royalties from the field are its single largest source of revenue. 

    This  included confirmation of a three-well infill campaign at the Bayu Undan field first flagged in its second quarter results, which Santos expects to extend the legacy gas field's life out to 2025. 

    Santos will drill two platform wells and one subsea well with sanction planned for the end of the year, Gallagher said.  

    It will be the first campaign drilled with Santos as operator of the offshore asset, which is now fully under Timor-Leste jurisdiction since the small nation ratified the maritime boundary treaty with Australia last year.  

    It will also provide ongoing revenue to the nation given royalties from the field are its single largest source of revenue. 

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here

     

  • 21 Aug 2020 2:57 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    ORIGIN Energy and its joint venture partner Falcon Oil & Gas are heading back to the Beetaloo, months earlier than first anticipated when the COVID-19 pandemic hit Australia.

    The venture was forced to abandon fraccing plans and then completion of the Kyalla-117 appraisal well earlier this year after the pandemic led to movement restrictions and hard border closures. 

    Kyalla has been labelled an exciting ‘well to watch' by many in the industry. 

    Yesterday, the junior stakeholder Falcon Oil & Gas (22.5%) said the two companies would restart activities at the wellsite within months. Origin also mentioned its intention to be back in the region by the end of the year in its latest financial report

    Subject to another breakout of coronavirus in the NT, Origin and Falcon plan to frac the well within this quarter or next. 

    Once fraccing is completed, an extended production test will follow. The results of this test are expected late this year, or potentially early next. 

    The test will form the basis of a commercialisation plan and future exploration for liquids and gas in the Velkerri formation across the basin. 

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    "We look forward to the next phase of operations with the fracture stimulation of the Kyalla-117 well and will update the market as results become available," Falcon chief Philip O'Quigley said. 

    Falcon sold down a further 7.5% interest to operator Origin in April, an agreement aimed at cutting the junior partners' costs. 

    Under the agreement Origin will carry Falcon for a further $25 million worth of future work at the well. 

    Kyalla-117 was drilled to a total depth of 3809 metres with a 1579 lateral section in February. 

    During drilling elevated gas shows with relatively high liquids were observed in all three of the target reservoirs encountered. 

    If the well proves as commercial as the venture expects, there are multiple commercialisation opportunities, including the Amadeus to Moomba pipeline announced just yesterday by Australian Gas Infrastructure Group and Macquarie.

    The new $1 billion pipeline will see gas from the NT piped directly to Santos' Moomba gas supply hub in South Australia. 

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here


  • 21 Aug 2020 12:10 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    "Territory Story" is a popular podcast run by Peter Gowers (Oppidanus Digital Marketing) and Leon Loganathan (Ward Keller). 

    118. Stephanie Stonier - Fracking in the Territory

    125. Stephanie Stonier - Response to Terry Mills on Fracking

    Stephanie Stonier is the Corporate Affairs Manager (Northern Australia) for Origin Energy. Stephanie now has two podcasts online with Territory Stories including her personal story and how she has been involved in industry followed by her response to 

    Born in Perth, Stephanie is the daughter of a Vietnam Veteran. Growing up, she suffered heart palpitations than were eventually identified in her twenties as associated with the possible effects of Agent Orange.

    Stephanie went to work for Rio Tinto including a stint in Mongolia before taking on the role with Origin Energy and being the face for the company’s commitment to fracking in the Northern Territory.

    On these episodes of Territory Story, she speaks candidly about her life and her role in promoting the science and the benefits of fracking.

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