Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) has released the 2018 edition of the ‘WA Gas Statement of Opportunities report’, providing an independent assessment of Western Australia’s domestic gas market from 2019 – 2028.
According to the report, the state’s domestic gas market is well-supplied until 2020 but potential gas supply from existing and under construction supply sources may not be enough to meet low, base, or high forecast domestic gas demand. Therefore, prospective supply sources will be required to fill this gap.
AEMO’s Executive General Manager WA, Cameron Parrotte, said the findings highlight a tightening of the domestic gas market in 2021 as supply contracts begin to expire and some existing domestic gas facilities face reserve depletion.
“Despite these forecasts, we’ve seen a growth of both committed and prospective supply sources since 2017 and we anticipate an additional 240 terajoules a day in new production capacity from 2019,” said Mr Parrotte.
Several committed gas projects are on track to commence in 2019, with an additional four projects in the planning stage which could provide up to 485 terajoules a day in incremental supply if they commence during the outlook period. However, while prospective, these projects are yet to reach the Final Investment Decision stage.
“The report also notes that any prospective tightness in the market may be alleviated by the acceleration of production from existing processing facilities or withdrawals from gas storage facilities,” Mr Parrotte explained.
Lastly, the report forecasts that new mining and minerals processing projects will increase gas demand between 2018 and 2022. Yet the report notes that this is projected to be partly offset by new renewable capacity entering the market, causing a slight decrease in demand from gas-powered generation of electricity in the South West interconnected system.
In response to AEMO’s findings, APPEA Chief Executive Dr Malcom Roberts said the report identifies a need to develop WA’s substantial known offshore gas resources and the critical importance of further exploration onshore in the Canning and Perth basins to meet future gas demand.
“Encouraging a diversity of gas supply – offshore and onshore – will ensure that WA gas consumers have a secure, competitive supply,” he commented.
The full report can be found here.