The McGowan Government has strengthened Western Australia’s domestic gas policy to ensure security of supply for Western Australians.
The WA Domestic Gas Policy secures the State’s long-term energy needs and ongoing economic development by ensuring that LNG export project developers also make gas equivalent to 15 per cent of exports available to the domestic market.
Premier Mark McGowan announced today that the WA Domestic Gas Policy would be amended to prevent the export of local WA gas.
Under the updated policy, local WA gas cannot be exported to the Eastern States or overseas, and gas used to power ships will not be considered domestic gas.
Due to exceptional economic circumstances created by the COVID-19 pandemic, the State Government has given in-principle support to allow the Waitsia project in the Mid-West to fill available capacity at the Karratha Gas Plant and export some of its gas as LNG for a short period of time.
This arrangement helps ensure the Waitsia Gas Project Stage 2 proceeds to construction. The project will create 200 construction jobs and deliver large volumes of gas into the WA market.
The tightened policy also includes greater transparency and increased reporting so that industry knows who is supplying gas and how much is available in the market.
An estimated 90 per cent of Australia’s recoverable gas reserves are located in the Carnarvon and Browse basins in the North-West and support WA’s LNG export industry, as well as the State’s domestic gas market.
The WA Government is working with the LNG Jobs Taskforce to grow the gas industry, create local jobs and establish WA as a global LNG hub.
As stated by Premier Mark McGowan:
“Western Australia’s domestic gas policy is the envy of the nation, and the updated policy will ensure our State can continue to access reliable and affordable gas.
“These amendments ensure the policy remains fit for purpose by clarifying that the State Government will not agree to exports of local gas to the Eastern States or overseas.
“There will be no change to traditional LNG projects like Browse and Scarborough, where they must reserve 15 per cent of exported gas volumes for domestic use.
“For the domestic gas policy to work, the market also needs to know how much gas is available to it, and when the gas is available. We’ve listened to WA industry’s calls for this transparency and the amended policy will ensure it happens.
“We have seen what’s happened on the east coast with local gas supplies being prioritised for export and we won’t let that happen here.
“The Waitsia Gas Project Stage 2 in the Mid-West is an exception to the policy. Once sanctioned, it will provide urgently needed jobs, royalties and economic stimulus for the region and the State.
“WA gas will continue to be the bedrock of the WA economy.”