19 May 2023

Media Release: Commonwealth carbon capture exploration release boosts growing net zero industry – but new Queensland strategy misses out

The opening up of new areas of Australia to explore for suitable carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) sites will help reduce emissions and create jobs in a growing sector, according to Australia’s oil and gas industry.

Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association (APPEA) Chief Executive Samantha McCulloch said the Federal Government’s annual release today of greenhouse gas storage acreage was a positive step in supporting the growing deployment of CCUS technology.

“Momentum is growing for carbon capture technology around the world, with places like the US and UK unveiling substantial incentives and programs to encourage investment,” she said.

“Australia must seize the extraordinary opportunity before it – for emissions reductions and economic benefits given the chance to create a new industry and jobs in a cleaner energy future.”

Some of the areas identified – the Bonaparte, Browse, Northern Carnavon, Perth, Otway, Bass and Gippsland basins – are covered by nine Net Zero Zones proposed in a new APPEA report released this week and featuring CCUS technology as shared infrastructure to carpool carbon emissions.

Ms McCulloch said the oil and gas industry was disappointed with the separate release today of a Queensland New Industry Development Strategy (QNIDS) which omitted CCUS technology from a list of targeted growth industries critical to the energy transformation to net zero.

“With its geological formations and gas infrastructure already in place, Queensland is well-placed to capitalise on the growth of CCUS technology around the world,” she said.

“Queensland has a strong understanding of extracting economic benefits from the gas industry and should be including CCUS in any plan to create a net zero economy.

“If not it will miss out on not only emissions reductions but the new investment and jobs CCUS can help deliver – adding to the 30,000 jobs already support along the state’s gas supply chain.”

The Net Zero Zones report showed how areas like Central Queensland the Brisbane-Surat Basin region in the south could house regional industrial and manufacturing hubs to accelerate emissions reductions and become magnets for new investment.

The NZZ concept is based on shared infrastructure and promoting the net zero building blocks of CCUS, renewables, natural gas and low-carbon hydrogen production.

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