The Australian gas industry

Australia’s gas industry is growing rapidly, creating valuable jobs, domestic power generation, export income and tax revenue.

Gas is not only a major fuel but also an important component in many industrial processes. It is used to make fertilisers, plastics and many chemicals.

Fuel

Gas is widely used in electricity generation. Because gas-fired generation is reliable and can be quickly started and stopped, it can be used for both baseload and peaking power. It can also be used to fill gaps in renewable power generation when wind or sunshine are not available.

Gas is also used for cooking, heating houses and buildings, and heating water.

It is also important for fuelling many industrial operations, including glass and steel foundries, and aluminium and nickel smelters.

Gas can also be used in the form of compressed natural gas (CNG) or liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a transportation fuel.

 

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Manufacturing

Gas is used in producing a wide range of industrial products, including steel, glass, plastics and polymers, paints and dyes, and textiles.

Gas is also very important in the production of fertilisers.

History

Australia has a long association with natural gas.

In 1900, a well being drilled for water in Roma, Queensland accidentally discovered the country’s first natural gas field.

Commercial gas production from central Australia and Bass Strait began in the 1960s.

LNG has also been exported from the northwest of Western Australia since 1989.