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Northern Territory

News

  • 13 Jan 2020 2:44 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    AUSTRALIA’s minister for natural resources Matt Canavan has signed a joint statement of cooperation with Japan’s Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry, Hiroshi Kajiyama on the development of hydrogen and fuel cells, paving the way for further work on developing a hydrogen export industry.

    Japan has plans to build a domestic hydrogen economy to decarbonise and Australia is working to replicate the success of its LNG exports with a hydrogen export industry, while also exploring the gas for domestic use.

    The two signed the statement during the Australia-Japan Ministerial Economic Dialogue in Melbourne last week. 

    "Australia is building a hydrogen production base to foster domestic growth and meet future export demand in Japan and the region," Canavan said.

    The nine-point document outlines future cooperation and builds off both Australia's National Hydrogen Strategy of 2019 and  the Tokyo Statement released during the 1st Hydrogen Energy Ministerial Meeting in Tokyo in October 2018 and the Global Action Agenda of the Tokyo Statement released during the 2nd Hydrogen Energy Ministerial Meeting in Tokyo in September 2019.

    Australia finally released its National Hydrogen Strategy in November last year. Though it presents a clear way forward, notes each state's capabilities and projects and aims to develop hydrogen service ‘clusters' it has been criticized for its focus on fossil fuel generated hydrogen.

    "Scenarios developed for the National Hydrogen Strategy indicate an Australian hydrogen industry could generate about 8,000 jobs and about $11 billion a year in GDP by 2050," a statement from the minister's office said this afternoon.

    "The statement encourages Australia and Japan to exchange views on national hydrogen strategies and safety information as well as shape the global hydrogen market regulations," the government said today.

    It will also encourage the two "to exchange views on national hydrogen strategies and safety information as well as shape the global hydrogen market regulations".

    It also called the Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain project in Victoria "a cornerstone of the bilateral economic relationship and welcome the steady progress of the project towards establishing an international hydrogen supply chain."

    The $500 million project, which has $100 million of funding from Australian government bodies both federal and state, aims to develop hydrogen from the La Trobe Valley's brown coal, sequestering the resulting carbon underground utilising the CarbonNet carbon capture and storage project then liquefying the resulting gas and transporting it via specialised ship to Japan. 

    Kawasaki, which is developing the project, launched the world's first bulk liquid hydrogen carrier the Susio Frontier in December, which will transport the new fuel to a terminal in Kobe, Japan, that is still under construction.

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here.


  • 09 Jan 2020 12:38 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Watch Origin's Beetaloo Exploration video here

    ORIGIN Energy has responded to allegations it did not properly consult stakeholders in the Beetaloo Sub-basin by releasing a video on social media platforms with testimonies from various Native Title Holders.

    Social license issues and community condemnation has plagued Origin since the Northern Territory Gunner government lifted a moratorium on fraccing following the extensive Pepper environmental review.

    The video released by the company shows Native Titleholders apparently giving their blessing for Origin's plans due to new employment opportunities.

    "Opportunity wise and workwise, I think it is good that the gas industry is looking for people like us in the middle of the sticks because we don't get much, you know, contracts out here," title holder Gordon Jackson said, quoted in a tweet from Origin.  

    The praise comes after Origin delivered a new football oval for the town of Elliott in the NT.

    "There's not much opportunities, especially when you're a kid. We have a big dream but no opportunity to go places so your dreams and who you wanted to be dies then," Ben Ulamari said in an online video.

    Ulamari said there were now more opportunities to have choices in life.

    "We look after well sites in the Beetaloo Basin, so well checks all that sort of stuff. We also look after the airstrip."

    Ulamari's sentiment is shared by fellow titleholder Pompey Raymond, who said when he was "born on the Beetaloo" his community had no school or money.

    "[Gas development] is right for me. There's work for some of those young fellas," Raymond said.

    Origin, which became operator of several exploration permits in the Beetaloo in 2014, said it would continue to work "constructively, transparently and in good faith," with Traditional Owners that held Native Title Holder status.

    The company is required to provide its planned work programs a year in advance to the Northern Land Council and Native Title Holders to allow for community consultation.

    According to Origin, the timing allows for consideration of sacred site avoidance and clearance surveys to be completed and certified by law.

    Last year Origin and Falcon faced severe backlash from pastoralists and environmental campaign group Lock the Gate.

    In November Lock the Gate and several pastoralists near Origin's operations condemned the Territory government for not passing land access agreement legislation which would require oil and gas explorers to reach an agreement with pastoralists before accessing leases.

    The regime was supposed to be implemented before Origin spud its Kyalla well and included a series of minimum mandatory provisions on how pastoral leasers should be compensated for the impact exploration and production operations would have on their properties.

    Origin also faced unprecedented pushback from minority activist shareholders at its annual meeting in October, such as the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility.

    It claimed Origin had not properly consulted key Native Title Holders, however their allegations were based on indigenous people from other areas of Northern Territory, not direct Native Title Holders.

    Separately Bullwaddy Pastoral Company, which operates the Amungee Station near Daly Waters close to Origin's leases, took Origin to court over drilling plans arguing the joint venture had not conducted thorough consultation with stakeholders.

    The case was withdrawn from the Supreme Court after a meeting between the two parties.

    Origin (70%) and its Irish joint venture partner Falcon Oil & Gas (30%) recently hit gas at the Kyalla 117 N2 appraisal well, with initial evaluations of the vertical section of the well intersecting three source rock reservoir sections within the Kyalla Shale Formation with a thickness measuring almost 900 metres.

    All three sections exhibited "elevated gas shows with relatively high C3, C4, and C5," according to the venture.

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here

  • 07 Jan 2020 1:08 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    AUSTRALIA’s unprecedented bushfire disaster has seen the country’s upstream oil and gas industry mobilise by evacuating fire victims and making multi-million dollar donations.

    The fires have devastated more than 12 million hectares on the east coast, destroying whole towns and killing 22 people including volunteer firefighters.

    Last week the department of defense was called in to start evacuating locals in bushfire affected areas on the Gippsland coast of Victoria.

    However, oil and gas contractors also played a crucial role in the evacuations before the military was deployed by Canberra.

    The rig tender anchor handling vessel Far Saracen was released from a work program with ExxonMobil and deployed to provide provisions and relocate stranded citizens.

    A police officer who helped the crew of the Far Saracen, Chris Nairey, wrote in a Facebook post that the workers aboard the Far Saracen "worked around the clock… looking after sick people, the elderly, infants, and even special-needs teenagers."

    "They fed us. Gave us beds. Even made sure we had clean uniforms and underwear," he said.

    "They did this all while supplying Mallacoota with food, water and diesel. They did all of this on top of running the ship."

    Since New Year's Eve, ExxonMobil through its wholly-owned subsidiary Esso has worked continuously with emergency services responding to the East Gippsland fires.

    "This has included providing two support vessels, the Far Saracen and the Far Senator, which helped provide food and water to the town of Mallacoota, as well as providing accommodation for community members with medical conditions and emergency response personnel," an ExxonMobil spokesperson told Energy News.

    ExxonMobil also provided two of its helicopter fleet for firefighting services.

    The upstream industry has also pledged more than A$4 million to help affected communities.

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here

  • 05 Dec 2019 11:59 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    CONTRACTOR Valmec has achieved mechanical completion at Jemena’s Atlas gas compressor facility.

    The 40 terajoule plant will process gas from Senex Energy's Project Atlas gas fields in the Surat Basin before piping it to the east coast domestic market.

    In June last year, Senex and Jemena partnered to build the 40 terajoule gas compressor and pipeline to send gas from the Project Atlas processing facility to Wallumbilla Hub, marking the first domgas route to market.

    Jemena completed the pipeline which connects the fields to the processing facility in October.

    Valmec said on Saturday it expected to be fully demobilised from the site by the end of December, having achieved the last stage of construction activities.

    "Commissioning by the Jemena team is well underway, ensuring gas from the facility can be delivered to major Queensland manufacturers, providing a major boost to the local economy," Valmec said.

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here

  • 03 Dec 2019 11:56 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Santos today lifted its 2025 production target further to 120 million barrels of oil equivalent (mmboe), more than double 2018’s output.

    The new target, up from 100 mmboe set in 2018, represents a cumulative annual growth rate in production of over 8% to 2025.

    Speaking at the company’s Investor Day in Sydney, Santos Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Kevin Gallagher said the successful execution of Santos’ Transform-Build-Grow strategy since 2016 has the company positioned for disciplined growth and sustainable shareholder returns.

    “Our strategy has been to establish a disciplined low-cost operating model that delivers strong cash flows through the oil price cycle. Our 2019 forecast free cash flow breakeven oil price is now ~US$29 per barrel,” Mr Gallagher said.

    “The recently announced acquisition of ConocoPhillips’ interests in northern Australia and Timor-Leste1 will further reduce our breakeven oil price and deliver operating interests in long-life, low-cost conventional natural gas assets and strategic LNG infrastructure.”

    “We are now positioned for disciplined growth leveraging existing infrastructure in all five of our core assets, which we believe will deliver 120 mmboe by 2025.”

    This disciplined growth portfolio includes:

    •          Barossa LNG – targeting FID around the end of Q1 2020
    •          Dorado liquids – targeting FEED-entry Q2 2020
    •          PNG LNG expansion – targeting FEED-entry in 2020
    •          GLNG ramp-up to ~6.2 mtpa sales from 2020
    •          Cooper Basin production growth.

    Mr Gallagher said Santos was well positioned to fund growth out of operating cash flow and debt while maintaining gearing levels within the company’s target range through the major growth phase, with rapid de-gearing expected thereafter.

    “Natural gas is forecast to supply a quarter of the world’s total energy demand by 2040. Through our Energy Solutions business, we are investing in projects to lower emissions and assessing the significant potential for carbon capture and storage in the Cooper Basin,” Mr Gallagher said.

    Completion of the acquisition is expected in the first quarter of 2020 and is subject to third-party consents and regulatory approvals.

    Guidance

    Santos has narrowed 2019 production guidance to 74-76 mmboe (previous 73-77 mmboe) and sales volumes guidance to 93-95 mmboe (previous 90-97 mmboe).

    2019 upstream unit production cost guidance is lowered to $7.25-7.50/boe (previous $7.25-7.75/boe). Capital expenditure is expected to be approximately $1 billion (previous $950 million to $1,050 million) including major growth. 


  • 03 Dec 2019 11:53 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    SANTOS won’t move headquarters from hometown Adelaide but will move its offshore division to Perth, according to managing director Kevin Gallagher at his company’s investor day in Sydney this morning. 

    Last week at the Resources Technology Showcase in Perth Western Australian premier Mark McGowan suggested "Santos could be Wantos" as he called for a series of companies including Santos and BHP to re-headquarter to the west's sunnier climes.   

    He suggested Sydney's beaches are hard to get to, Melbourne's not worth visiting, Brisbane's too humid and "don't get me started on Adelaide".   

    "Santos could become Wantos, you won't regret moving to WA you'll be right at the cutting edge," he said.  

    "I think it's a long term prospect. A lot of their operations are here," he told a later press conference.  

    McGowan suggested Santos could base "divisions of their operations (in Perth), I think it would be a wise move on their part and obviously I have mentioned that repeatedly to Mr Gallagher." 

    "We're not planning on moving our headquarters to Perth, (but) we're centring our offshore business there," Gallagher said today in response to a question about whether Santos' Perth headquarters could tower over Woodside.  

    Rather it will locate its onshore business in Queensland and midstream operations and headquarters would stay in South Australia, he said. 

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here

  • 02 Dec 2019 12:01 PM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    AUSTRALIAN Gas Infrastructure Group has officially started construction of South Australia’s first hydrogen production plant in South Adelaide.

    The Hydrogen Park SA is an A$11.4 million small-scale facility consisting of a 1.25 megawatt electrolyser which splits water into oxygen and hydrogen gas.

    AGIG said the facility would be operational next year, with hydrogen produced and blended into the local gas distribution network by the end of 2020.  

    Today AGIG chief executive Ben Wilson and South Australian energy minister Dan van Holst Pellekaan formally launched the construction start-up.

    "This is a significant milestone in South Australia and for hydrogen in Australia," Wilson said.

    "This will enable residents in parts of the Adelaide suburb of Mitchell Park, to become South Australia's first natural gas customers to receive a blended 5% renewable gas - a combination of natural gas and renewable hydrogen."

    AGIG received A$4.9 million from the state government's Renewable Technology Fund to build and operate the project.

    Valmec was named key project development partner for the facility in July.

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read more here

  • 29 Nov 2019 11:45 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Community and Business Reference Group meet for the sixth time

    The Onshore Shale Gas Community and Business Reference Group (Reference Group) held its sixth meeting in Darwin on 13 November 2019.

    Established to provide a forum for government to seek advice and share information, the Reference Group received presentations and updates on the:
    • implementation of the Reserved Block Policy
    • role of the Aboriginal Areas Protection Authority
    • development of the NT Climate Response Strategy
    • detail of the SREBA framework
    • progress to support NT business to capture maximum benefit from onshore gas. 
    Members of the Reference Group sought clarification on a number of matters relating to the presentations which were taken on notice and will either be addressed out of session or at the next meeting in March 2020.

    Ms Julie-Ann Stoll has resigned from her membership of the Reference Group. Members thanked her for her contribution and welcomed her replacement Mr Joe Martin-Jard as the representative of the Central Land Council.

    For full details of the meeting and to read Communique 6 please click here.


  • 28 Nov 2019 11:50 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    FOR a man whose company has some impressive hydrogen plans Woodside Petroleum CEO Peter Coleman has some reservations about the future of ‘green’ or renewable hydrogen. 

    Speaking on a panel that included Chevon Corporation managing director Al Williams, Shell Australia chair Zoe Yujnovich and Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association CEO Andrew McConville Coleman pointed out some of the issues well known by scientists and engineers and often forgotten by politicians: it has a lower energy density than other fuels and tiny molecules prone to escape.  

    Last week the federal government released its hydrogen strategy with an aim to kickstart Australia's trade and use of the gas by 2030, taking a technology-neutral stance that still sees a place for fossil fuel-based hydrogen provided resulting carbon is captured.  Political will at state and federal level is apparent, in a huge change from even two years ago but technical expertise still lags.  

    Pulling figures he used last week in Sydney at a press event on the sideline of Woodside's investor briefing day Coleman told the Resources Technology Showcase in Perth to create enough green hydrogen to equal the energy from just Pluto LNG's single train would be some 60 gigawatts.  

    That equates to a solar farm the size of greater Sydney.  

    "Multiply that out by all of the trains we have operating. We have to solve the problem in a different way." 

    Western Australian Premier Mark McGowan, also on the panel, has been an ardent supporter of development of a state hydrogen strategy but was genuinely surprised by the figures.

    Source: Energy News Bulletin

    Read  more here


  • 27 Nov 2019 11:47 AM | Sonia Harvey (Administrator)

    Groundwater monitoring results at petroleum well sites in the Beetaloo Sub-basin released by Santos

    The Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing in the Nothern Territory identified the need for a ground water monitoring program at each petroleum well site. The purpose of the program is to provide confidence that natural groundwater characteristics remain unaltered; or alternatively provide early detection of any contamination or altered hydrology that may occur as a result of petroleum activities. Monitoring results may also provide justification for further investigation or remedial action, if necessary.

    Santos QNT Pty Ltd has submitted monitoring data for the Tanumbirini and Inacumba petroleum well sites on EP161 in the Beetaloo sub-basin, covering the period from December 2018 to October 2019.

    This report  fulfils the Code of Pratice: Onshore Petroleum Activities in the Northern Territory (the Code) (2019) requirement for 6 months of baseline monitoring of groundwater at a well site prior to undertaking hydraulic fracturing activities.

    This was also a condition of Ministerial approval of the Santos McArthur Basin 2019-2020 Hydraulic Fracturing Program Environment Management Plan (EMP).

    To comply with the Code, companies are required to submit groundwater monitoring data quarterly, with the Department of the Environment and Natural Resources committed to publishing the monitoring  results from interest holders. 

    The Santos groundwater monitoring program consists of:

    • a Control Montoring Bore (CMB), which is located “upstream’’ and within 100m of each planned or existing petroleum well pad, screened across the Gum Ridge aquifer in compliance with the Code 
    • an Impact Monitoring Bore, which is located 20m “downstream” of the location of each petroleum well.

    These bores enable a comparison of the groundwater upstream and downstream of the petroleum well, to allow for an immediate identification of any variation in the groundwater that can be directly related to the petroleum activity.

    The groundwater monitoring studies undertaken over the last 12 months at the Tanumbirini and Inacumba petroleum well sites operated by Santos identified very limited variation over the period, and no material changes in groundwater levels.

    The variation observed was within the bounds of what we understand to be natural variation and will continue to be monitored. 

    Santos has started to hydraulically fracture Tanumbirini 1 and is looking to start drilling Tanumbirini 2 and Inacumba in 2020, so the results gathered thus far provide an acceptable level of pre-activity baseline information.

    To read the full report, please click here


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