Energy and Resources Minister Michael O’Brien last week welcomed the release for public consultation of a draft National Harmonised Regulatory Framework for coal seam gas.
The national framework process has been revealed to consider leading practiced approaches to the regulation of the coal seam gas industry, including water management and monitoring; well design and integrity; hydraulic fracturing; and chemical use.
“I encourage all interested people, community groups, businesses and local government to have their say on the draft framework. The draft framework makes the important point that governments play a crucial role in delivering regulation that is effective in managing coal seam gas activities and efficient in maximising the benefits to the community,” ,” Mr O’Brien said.
The framework is geared towards providing greater levels of consistency, certainty and transparency in the development of the coal seam gas industry throughout Australia.
In August, the Victorian Coalition Government revealed a series of changes to provide certainty for communities and industry in the lead up to the development of the framework.
‘Exploration for coal seam gas in Victoria is at a very early stage. There is currently no coal seam gas production in Victoria. While the location of Victoria’s coal resources is well known, the amount of any associated gas and the feasibility of extraction are uncertain,’ Premier Victoria.
Public consultation will occur until 18 February 2013.
The draft framework and further information about the public consultation process is available at http://www.scer.gov.au/workstreams/land-access/coal-seam-gas/