June 28, 2012

Queensland gas companies have now signed more than 2600 access agreements with landholders according to quarterly data released by the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) today.

APPEA Chief Operating Officer Eastern Region, Rick Wilkinson, told the Brisbane Mining Club that gas companies have also contributed $70 million to regional communities from funding for rescue helicopter services to new equipment for hospitals.

Mr Wilkinson said: “Farming and gas extraction can co-exist through responsible cooperation that protects the environment.

“We are seeing extraordinary economic growth in Queensland where all stakeholders are binding together to support an industry that, in return, is providing so much benefit to regional areas.”

A recent ACIL Tasman report into the economic significance of coal seam gas in Queensland found the industry would increase Gross State Product by half a trillion dollars in coming decades, boosting employment, wages and the state’s reputation as an economic powerhouse.

Mr Wilkinson said NSW, on the other hand, has seen little gas activity this year.

National Account figures for the March 2012 quarter show Western Australia recorded a growth rate of 13.6% over the last 12 months, Queensland’s growth rate was 7.8% yet NSW only grew by 2.1%.

“The gas industry has the potential to be an economic game changer in NSW and we are looking forward to the release of the state’s Strategic Regional Land Use Plan to provide greater certainty for industry, landholders and communities alike.”

“The appointment of a land and water commissioner, announced by the NSW Government last weekend, is an opportunity to ensure the industry’s benefits are delivered to local communities and that the challenges raised by the industry’s growth, are addressed.”

CSG Industry data 1st quarter 2012 shows:

Signed   land access agreements
Queensland – 2637 – up from 2459 in 2011
NSW   – 105
Employment
Queensland –   Approximately 12,000
NSW   – Approximately 250
Community   contributions (eg charitable donations, school projects, hospital equipment,   aeromedical evacuation services)
Queensland – $70   million
NSW   – $467,000
Active   Wells
Queensland – 3158
NSW   – 245

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Chris WardMobile: 0408 033 422Email: >cward@appea.com.au