The Beetaloo region is remote, with limited existing infrastructure to support development.
To ensure optimal delivery of infrastructure, we are:
- establishing a new $173.6 million Roads of Strategic Importance corridor, the Northern Territory Gas Industry Roads Upgrades
- working with the NT Government and gas operators to deliver midstream infrastructure
- facilitating Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) discussions to ensure that stakeholders don't miss out on Beetaloo gas development opportunities
The region requires significant investment to be ready for gas development. This will likely include upgraded roads, rail, pipelines, waste and medical assets. Timely delivery of this crucial infrastructure at the right capacity will reduce production costs and deliver the highest benefits.
A new gas industry in the region will involve heavier traffic flows. A number of roads servicing the Beetaloo are currently of low quality. They cannot support the higher volumes of heavy traffic required for exploration and development activity.
With the new funding in the plan, the government is committing $174 million for the Northern Territory Gas Industry Roads Upgrades. This will provide funding to upgrade roads supporting the development of gas resources in and around the Beetaloo.
Public road upgrades will:
- improve road safety
- increase road reliability during the wet season
- boost regional productivity
It will also create much needed jobs. Road upgrades will also support existing road users, including pastoralists, ensuring shared benefits.
Development of the Beetaloo will also require new gas processing and transportation arrangements. Generation of large gas volumes will require additions to the Amadeus Gas Pipeline capacity. Some plans may require expanded gas transmission routes to the East Coast or additional LNG export facilities.
Independent analysis shows that poor and duplicative infrastructure decisions could increase the overall cost of development by over $2 billion. As noted by the ACCC Gas Inquiry, this outcome could increase the cost of Beetaloo gas to consumers. It could also impair the commercial viability of developing some of the Beetaloo’s resources.
The NT Government, working with the Australian Government and gas operators, will deliver a midstream infrastructure plan. This plan will coordinate the timely delivery and appropriate scale of Beetaloo gas infrastructure required to support multiple operators. This will avoid potential development delays and additional development costs.
The government has also announced changes to the NAIF. These changes provide more flexibility to deliver for the NT and for northern Australia. They can also support Beetaloo infrastructure developments. Support requires projects that face financing constraints to have the potential to deliver significant public benefits.