The Australian Government will complete a study into offshore gas basins in Southern Australia, as part of a $90 million investment in domestic gas security and supply.

Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Senator Matt Canavan said the study of the Gippsland, Otway, Bass and Sorell Basins would look into the prospects for future supplies of gas to supply the South East Australia domestic gas market.

“Australian jobs and Australian industry have been built up around the plentiful supply of affordable and reliable gas on the East Coast,” Minister Canavan said.

“But the original reserves that have powered our economy can’t last forever.

“To ensure Australia continues to make the most of our vast gas resources, it’s essential that we support ongoing exploration and development.”

The Australian Government will work with the Victorian and Tasmanian Governments on the Offshore South East Australia Future Gas Supply Study.  The National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator (NOPTA) and Geoscience Australia will provide expert advice.

The study will focus on developing a better understanding of the volumes of gas available in this highly productive area, and will also seek to identify opportunities to maximise sustainable gas recovery.

“This study is one of a range of steps the Australian Government is taking to ensure gas security, reliability and affordability,” Minister Canavan said.

“The Government is introducing the Australian Domestic Gas Security Mechanism as a safeguard to ensure Australian gas users have access to gas at a reasonable price, while at the same time we can continue our leading role in the global LNG export market.

“However, the best way to ensure a reliable and affordable supply of gas for the domestic market is to develop new gas reserves.

“In this year’s budget we allocated more than $90 million across a range of programs focussed on developing new gas supplies.  This includes a $28.7 million package to accelerate the responsible development of onshore gas for the domestic market.

“The grant program is open to all States and Territories that are prepared to lift bans and moratoriums. It will support projects with the capability of delivering gas to the East Coast market within the next three years.”