NT Government on track to implement world’s ‘best practice’ operating environment for onshore gas industry

Source: Northern Territory Government - www.newsroom.nt.gov.au

09 March 2016

The Northern Territory Government is continuing its plan to develop world’s best practice for onshore gas activity and is inviting feedback from key stakeholders and the community on the new environmental regulations for the Territory’s onshore oil and gas industry.

Mines and Energy Minister David Tollner said the draft Petroleum (Environment) Regulations will implement recommendations by Dr Allan Hawke AC on how to introduce a best-practice regulatory system for the NT

“The Regulations embrace the principles of Ecologically Sustainable Development and focus on minimising environmental impacts to as low as reasonably practicable,” he said.

A condition of the Regulations is that approved Environment Management Plans will become public documents and legally binding documents, meaning that companies must comply with their approved plans.

“The Northern Territory already has a robust regulatory system for the current level of oil and gas activities,” Mr Tollner said.

“However, as technology evolves and the industry develops, the Government is going a step further to protect the environment in which oil and gas activities may occur into the future, and is currently undergoing significant regulatory reform.

"The draft regulations will not only take into account the recommendations by Dr Allan Hawke and industry expert Dr Tina Hunter they also incorporate lessons learned from onshore oil and gas development in North America and best practice regulation in South Australia and Western Australia."

The draft regulations aim to:

“It is a priority for this Government to undertake open and transparent communications and we’re committed to engaging with the community and stakeholders on the development of the regulatory regime that addresses the concerns of all Territorians,” Mr Tollner said.

Submissions for public comment will be open until 4 April 2016.  

Submissions can be made at www.onshoregas.nt.gov.au or by emailing onshoregas@nt.gov.au


“The onshore oil and gas industry has the potential to create 6,300 full time jobs in the Northern Territory and government revenue of up to $460 million a year,” Mr Tollner said.

“Unlike offshore royalties which go to the Commonwealth, all royalties from the onshore industry will be paid to the NT Government.

“We intend to use this revenue to ensure Territory students get the best education at the lowest possible cost.

ow under threat as a result of Labor’s plan to ban onshore gas activity until they have a known scientist do research into the industry.

“Well, we have already done that research and the Hawke Report released last year detailed how onshore gas activity can take place safely in the Northern Territory, provided the appropriate regulatory and monitoring regime is in place and in line with community expectations.

“The Territory Government sees onshore gas exploration as providing significant economic benefits but we also recognise that Territorians will not accept trade-offs when it comes to the environment and protecting our treasured lifestyle.”


To read further scientific research about how onshore oil and gas activity can occur safely click on the links below

United States Environmental Protection Agency - http://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2015-06/documents/hf_es_erd_jun2015.pdf

Environmental Research of the German Federal Ministry of the Environment - http://www.umweltbundesamt.de/s...texte_83_2013_environmental_impacts_of_fracking.pdf

Australian Council of Learned Academies -http://www.acola.org.au/PDF/SAF06FINAL/Final%20Report%20Engineering%20Energy%20June%202013.pdf

UK Royal Academy of Engineers - http://www.raeng.org.uk/publications/reports/shale-gas-extraction-in-the-uk

Council of Canadian Academies - http://www.scienceadvice.ca/uploads/eng/assessments%20and%20publications%20and%20news%20releases/shale%20gas/shalegas_fullreporten.pdf

The Scottish Government’s Independent report - http://www.gov.scot/Resource/0045/00456579.pdf

WA Dept of Health - http://ww2.health.wa.gov.au/~/media/Files/Corporate/Reports%20and%20publications/PDF/Hydraulic-Fracturing-HHRA-18June%202015.ashx



Marnie Hobson 0409 527 909


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