REVEALED: 180 gas wells granted approval for Western Downs
The Queensland Government has given the green light to Australia’s second largest oil and gas company Santos, to begin developing 764 square kilometres of land in the Surat and Bowen Basins.
The land is located on the Western Downs south of Miles, Wallumbilla, Jackson, and west of Condamine, and is said to stimulate the Queensland economy by increasing the amount domestic gas available to the east coast market.
Resources Minister Scott Stewart said Santos was granted an authority prospect by the Palaszczuk Government to take full advantage of the gas rich basins.
“We are serious about finding gas to keep power stations generating, stoves burning, and workers working and have imposed strict conditions that any gas produced from this venture heads straight to the Australian market,” Mr Stewart said.
“The granting of this ATP means Santos has fulfilled all necessary land access agreements, environmental and Native Title requirements and can soon get down to work exploring for gas as part of Queensland’s $70b onshore gas industry.”
Santos managing director and chief executive officer Kevin Gallagher said the company would invest about $15m into the state and local economies.
“Through the global pandemic, Santos… maintained its drilling program and 2021 will be the same, with around $800m being invested right here in Queensland to drill another 180 wells and deliver more gas supply,” Mr Gallagher said.
“This will support the jobs of the nearly 1200 Queensland workers in our operations and provide more opportunities for small and family businesses in regional Queensland.
“Importantly, Queensland and east coast customers pay less for gas than Asian customers and they will continue to enjoy a competitive gas price advantage as we bring more low-cost supply to market from this new ATP and our other Queensland developments.”
Mr Stewart said Queensland continued to lead the way for the rest of Australia toward a renewable energy future.
“Queensland is the only state securing Australia’s east coast gas supply with nation-leading gas policy and land releases,” he said.
“Since 2015 this Government has released more than 80,000 km2 of land for gas exploration with almost a quarter of it guaranteed for the Australian domestic market.
“Our gas supply policy is working for industry, it is keeping gas pumping and it is keeping jobs flowing.”