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Transcripts from the Prime Ministers of Australia

Transcript 15416

Gorgon Gas Development Project: Commonwealth Government Approval

Photo of Howard, John

Howard, John

Period of Service: 11/03/1996 to 03/12/2007

More information about Howard, John on The National Archive website.

Release Date: 10/10/2007

Release Type: Media Release

Transcript ID: 15416

I am very pleased that the proposed Gorgon Gas development on Barrow Island in Western Australia can now proceed, following approvals under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

The development will involve recovering gas from the Gorgon field near the North West Shelf gas fields off the WA coast and constructing a gas refining and liquid natural gas facility on Barrow Island, off northwest WA.

The proponents of the project, led by Chevron Australia, estimate taxes and royalties of $17 billion, additional export income of $2.5 billion and 6,000 direct and indirect jobs from the project.

The Gorgon project also includes the biggest greenhouse gas re-injection process in the world, to which the Government has committed $60million from the Low Emissions Technology Demonstration Fund. This will support sequestration of carbon dioxide captured from the gas refining process below Barrow Island.

The environmental approvals for the project are conditional on Chevron ensuring that there no unacceptable impacts on listed threatened and migratory species, including the flatback turtle, and other ecological communities and Commonwealth marine areas.

The approval requires Chevron to develop and implement a quarantine management plan, overseen by an expert advisory panel, to protect threatened species on Barrow Island. It also requires Chevron to conduct an environmental monitoring programme, implement environmental management plans for the operation of the gas field and refining plant and submit an annual environmental performance report.

The decision reflects a sensible and practical balance of environmental and economic considerations, allowing a key strategic investment in a significant energy resource whilst preserving and managing important natural assets.

Transcript 15416