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NSW needs to up CSG game

World Coal,

Queensland’s Minister for Energy, Mark McArdle, has called on the new Baird government to increase New South Wales’ gas supplies to provide cost relief to consumers.

The call follows the announcement that gas prices in NSW would increase by 17.6%.

CSG potential

McArdle said New South Wales had the potential to produce significant volumes of coal seam gas (CSG), but added that the state keeps putting substantial roadblocks in the way of producers.

He commented: “The answer to bringing down gas prices in the long-term lies in increasing supply, something New South Wales doesn’t seem to understand.

“The costs of pandering to minority anti-gas interest groups are now being paid for by New South Wales gas consumers.

NSW vs. Queensland

“In contrast, Queensland has facilitated the growth of its gas industry by creating the Gasfields Commission, which worked directly with landholders to help demonstrate the benefits of the CSG industry.

“The important employment and economic benefits of a CSG industry operating within a strong regulatory framework cannot be ignored.

“Queensland is on track to increase gas production from around 200 petajoules per annum in 2008 to 2000 petajoules per annum when exports are in full swing in 2016-17.”

Demand vs. supply

McArdle explained that while coal seam gas production began in New South Wales about the same time as it did in Queensland, its progress was so slow that demand was now outstripping supply.

“In gas supply, Queensland, South Australia and Victoria are carrying New South Wales. The New South Wales government should lift its game on gas production, or it will put even more upward pressure on gas prices,” McArdle concluded.

Adapted from press release by Katie Woodward

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