Minister Resources, Energy and Northern Australia Josh Frydenberg has announced $4m of funding is to be made available to CSIRO to undertake gas research.
The research will be undertaken using the Gas Industry Social and Environmental Research Alliance (GISERA) model.
Mr Frydenberg said the program would alleviate community concerns about unconventional gas extraction, including impacts on the community, water and land.
“These concerns need to be heard. As part of this discussion, the Turnbull Government is committed to better informing the community through science and research,” Mr Frydenberg said.
“GISERA uses the significant and trusted research capability of the CSIRO to provide sound scientific data and expertise on gas policy. This provides invaluable information for communities, industry and governments. In particular, GISERA will conduct new research into surface and groundwater, agricultural land management, biodiversity and socioeconomic impacts and opportunities.”
Mr Frydenberg, who spoke at the APPEA 2016 Conference and Exhibition in Brisbane today, said the gas industry is vital to the country.
“Recently, the ACCC made it very clear that blanket moratoria on unconventional gas extraction, which have no basis in science, are not the best way forward,” he said.
“In fact multiple studies have shown that unconventional gas activities can occur in an environmentally responsible way and be managed effectively with a robust regulatory framework.