SA Mines and Energy Journal : August-Sept 2010
AUGUST/SEPTEMBER SA MINES & ENERGY JOURNAL 19 PROFILE Paul Taliangis has made it his business to know what is going on in the energy sector in South Australia and around the nation. The Core Energy Group CEO, who originally trained as a chartered accountant and economist, set up his boutique advisory company in Adelaide more than eight years ago. He now advises organisations across the energy value chain -- from fund managers to executives of multi-national companies -- on the state of the country's energy industry and on executing energy transactions. He says renewable energy and gas are important for the state's future, and he is confident South Australia will meet the Federal Government's target of 20 per cent of energy from renewable sources by 2020. SA is at the centre of the nation's geothermal industry and also derives about 15 per cent of its power from wind. The state has almost half the current installed capacity of wind farms in the nation. Mr Taliangis says SA has been supplied with gas from the Cooper Basin since the 1970s, but more than half its gas needs are now supplied from Victorian sources such as Otway Basin via the SEAGas pipeline. Companies such as Beach Petroleum, Stuart Petroleum and Santos are actively exploring the Cooper Basin's unconventional gas supplies, which are more challenging to access. Unconventional gas, so- named because gas is released using unconventional engineering methods, includes shale gas, coal seam gas and tight gas. "In conventional gas, you're using traditional drilling and engineering techniques to extract oil and gas from better- quality rocks, " Mr Taliangis says. "Unconventional means you have to drill and then do something unusual to the geology to get the gas to flow -- eg in tight gas, you have to use special drilling techniques and fracture the rock, while with coal seam gas you have to take the water out first to get the gas to flow. "For SA, this will be quite a resource if we can break the code on extracting it at a suitable cost. "We're at the very early stages of looking at production from unconventional gas resources and there hasn't really been a need until the further substantial decline of the Cooper Basin over the past three years and the approaching maturity of long-standing gas contracts. " It is hoped the tapping of unconventional gas will once again ensure SA can met its own total gas needs. Technology helps Core Energy Group to service its interstate clients, but Mr Taliangis also travels weekly to Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane. He also consults to Asian companies looking to explore Australia's energy market. However, being a keen wine and food buff and with two daughters being educated in this state, he is keen to stay in Adelaide. His keen interest in art and his wife's involvement with the SA Art Gallery's Contemporary Collectors group also help keep him in SA. Energy to burn Energy is a hot topic as the world moves to reduce its carbon footprint, and consultant Paul Taliangis has his finger on the pulse of this ever-changing industry. Kate Nash reports. It is hoped the tapping of unconventional gas will once again ensure SA can met its own total gas needs Core Energy Group initially focussed on the oil and gas industry.