It’s not just a pipeline that officially opened in Mount Isa on Friday – it’s a critical piece of nation building.
That was the message loud and clear from the formal opening of the Mount Isa end of Jemena’s 622km long Northern Gas Pipeline from Tennant Creek.
The NGP links NT gas fields with Mount Isa with gas to be used as a crucial feedstock by Incitec Pivot’s Phosphate Hill and Gibson Island as well as mining and commercial operations in the North West.
Jemena’s Managing Director, Frank Tudor said that around 80 per cent of the NGP’s capacity has been contracted.
“The Northern Territory has enough gas to meet Australia’s future supply needs for the next 200 years or more, and our pipeline is the crucial, missing, link that will connect this gas with Australian homes and businesses,” Mr Tudor said.
Up to 90 terrajoules of new gas supply will flow into Queensland every day in 2019 through the pipeline.
Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Matt Canavan said the $800 million pipeline linked NT’s Amadeus Gas Pipeline to Queensland’s Carpentaria Gas Pipeline.
“It brings much needed development to the north and will be part of kick-starting the development of new onshore gas in areas like the Beetaloo Sub-Basin which has the potential to be a world-class gas province,” Senator Canavan said.
“The NGP will help ease supply pressures and enhance gas security for manufacturers, generators and households on the east coast.”
The project has created more than 800 jobs, including 268 jobs for Indigenous Australians and provided many opportunities for local businesses.
Queensland Mines and Energy Minister Dr Anthony Lynham said the pipeline did more than just bring much-needed gas to Australia’s east coast market.
“Most importantly for the north-west, this means access to critical energy and feedstock to fuel jobs and business opportunities in the north west,” Dr Lynham said.
“And any local household or business connected to the electricity grid here relies on gas-powered generation.”
Dr Lynham said the project had generated 51 local contracts and 129 local jobs in Mount Isa and of the 431 direct jobs created in Queensland, a quarter were filled by Indigenous people. Of the 107 Queensland-based contracts, Indigenous companies won 17.
“Construction brought jobs, but the long-term benefits will be the training Jemena has provided, which has created a legacy of more skilled people who are now better equipped to work on more regional projects,” he said.
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