SA Mines and Energy Journal : October-November 2010
15 OCTOBER/NOVEMBER 2010 SA MINES & ENERGY JOURNAL FEATURE Australia has vast gas resources, and astute Australian companies are looking to develop otherwise stranded unconventional gas, such as coal seam gas (CSG) across Australia. Exploitation of unconventional gas reserves has become economically viable with significant advances in horizontal drilling and hydraulic fracturing technologies and the emergence of export liquefied natural gas (LNG) markets. Hard on the heels of this world-class innovation, several companies are now focusing on exploring the huge unconventional gas resource potential in South Australia, to build on the existing proven, commercial, conventional gas reserves in the Cooper and Otway basins. The unconventional gas resources targeted in South Australia include CSG, underground coal gasification (UCG), gasification of mined coal, shale gas, and gas in low permeability reservoirs. Further exploration into frontier basins for giant oil may also find giant gas accumulations. With such diversification, material success of just one of these unconventional gas resources could result in sufficient reserves to underpin exports of LNG and synthesis fuel (synfuel) supplies from South Australia. The enormous potential of unconventional gas worldwide has the US government predicting shale gas, CSG and gas in low permeability reservoirs will make up a substantial proportion of international gas supplies in the future. The prospects of expanded use of gas for electricity generation and for making otherwise stranded gas and coal fungible as feedstock for LNG exports and synfuel manufacture is driving energy companies to secure titles over multiple international prospects. Success in the exploration and development of unconventional gas as feedstock for production of synfuel via gas to liquids technology has excellent potential to increase Australia's domestic transport fuel production and improve security of supply. This could include the use of LNG for large vehicles, increased use of compressed natural gas (CNG) for transport and expansion of Australia's hybrid and synfuel powered vehicles. The following are examples of the great expectations for the development of unconventional gas in the Cooper, Arckaringa and Walloway basins: • Santos noted in its 2009 Annual Report that an audit of the Cooper Basin has shown vast amounts of unconventional shale gas and tight gas resources. • Beach Energy has compared the potential in the Cooper Great potential for unconventional gas Barry Goldstein, Michael Jarasz, Michael Malavazos and Belinda Hayter from Primary Industries and Resources SA report. Roundtable Vision: The safe, efficient and profitable export of unconventional petroleum gas and liquids. Roundtable Strategies: Bring together government and industry representatives to: 1. Assess existing and emerging technologies, infrastructure and investment settings for the development of unconventional petroleum gas and liquids. 2. Provide input for master plans for the compatible, multiple land-use to foster deployment of infrastructure for the domestic use and export of unconventional petroleum gas and liquids. 3. Detail the life-cycle of safe, environmentally sustainable technologies and infrastructure for the domestic use and export of unconventional petroleum gas and liquids to foster investment 4. Develop a roadmap for exports and domestic use of unconventional petroleum gas and liquids. Protecting your Human and Financial Capital Lawson Risk Management Services Pty Ltd Level 7, 33 King William St, Adelaide SA 5000 PO Box 309, Rundle Mall SA 5000 Telephone: (08) 8210 2800 Facsimile: (08) 8212 9680 www.lawsonrisk.com.au Need to improve your safety program and reduce your workers compensation costs? Meet the team at Lawson Risk Management The consultants at Lawson Risk Management are highly experienced and qualified, specialising in the areas of Claims Management and Occupational Health & Safety. Our team has the expertise to customise & individualise your specific needs.
December 2010 - January 2011