On 17 October, Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction, the Hon. Angus Taylor MP, visited the Beetaloo Basin in the Northern Territory to build on the Federal Government’s gas-fired recovery plan.
Announced as part of the 2020-21 Budget, Minister Taylor said the Beetaloo Basin is the first of five key basins to be explored under the Government’s $28.3 million Strategic Basin Plans.
“The Beetaloo Basin is a world-class resource that has the potential to drive significant development in the Top End to create local jobs and help Australia remain a world leader in gas,” he said.
“The Government’s Strategic Basin Plans will accelerate this development, driving investment and job creation in our regional and Indigenous communities as we recover from COVID-19.”
“The Beetaloo Basin has the potential to supply more gas to Australian homes and manufacturers, helping to increase competition and drive down gas prices across the market. This will mean more Australian gas is working for all Australians,” Minister Taylor commented.
While visiting the Beetaloo Basin, Minister Taylor inspected progress of Empire Energy’s test drilling program at its Carpentaria-1 site.
Minister for Resources, Water and Northern Australia, the Hon. Keith Pitt MP, said this is an important milestone.
“The Beetaloo Basin has enormous potential for the Territory and the country, and it’s great to see this work getting underway” Minister Pitt said.
“Our Strategic Basin plan will drive more jobs in regional Australia and provide the cheap reliable energy industry needs to grow manufacturing.”
Empire Energy is evaluating the potential to produce gas from the Velkerri Shale in the Beetaloo sub-basin. Recent exploration has shown promising signs, finding liquids-rich gas at a shallower depth than previously expected.
Beetaloo was selected as the first location for the first Strategic Basin Plan to capitalise on industry momentum and to build on existing government initiatives in that region.
This includes the $8.4 million already committed by the Government to accelerate the development of the Beetaloo including conducting additional environmental work and work to ensure the gas development will benefit the Aboriginal Peoples of the Barkley Region and the Northern Territory.
While visiting the NT, Minister Taylor also held talks with Northern Territory Minister for Renewables and Energy, the Hon. Eva Lawler MLA, to discuss a Commonwealth-Northern Territory energy and emissions reduction agreement.