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Gas fires new jobs, contracts for Western Downs

Up to 350 jobs, plus contracts for local suppliers, will flow on the Western Downs over the next two years from the latest Queensland natural gas expansion.

Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham has welcomed the Shell QGC venture’s announcement of Project Goog-a-binge, which will see about 250 new wells across Shell’s QGC existing operations near Wandoan, Miles, Chinchilla and Tara.

“Queensland is the nation’s energy powerhouse, and we continue to do the heavy lifting on gas production and policy,” he said.

“This latest expansion plan will help ensure sustained gas supply to domestic customers as well as royalties to fund frontline services across the state.

“Most importantly, it will pump millions of dollars into local household budgets, local stores and local businesses for the next 30 years.

Project Goog-a-binge will bring about 930 petajoules of gas to market over the next 30 years for its domestic and export customers. Goog-a-binge is the Iman name for a scrub turkey, and was chosen by the local Iman traditional owners.

The Shell QGC venture already employs close to 1000 people in Queensland and has spent $140 million on goods and services in Toowoomba and Surat Basin communities in the first half of his year.

Dr Lynham encouraged local businesses to register online with EconomX, where the project and its contractors will seek expressions of interest for work packages.

“I understand QGC has already engaged three Chinchilla-based fabrication contractors for the project and just a couple of weeks ago I was in Toowoomba announcing that Easternwell had won a multi-million dollar, five-year contract with QGC,” he said.

“Ongoing investment in Queensland’s $70 billion gas industry shows the policy settings are right.

“We expect the gas industry to continue to deliver for the south-west, and the Palaszczuk Government will continue to drive increased gas supply with innovative policy, to meet the needs of households and Australian manufacturers.”

QGC will start pre-construction and site preparation activities at some sites next month, with wells to start being drilled from January 2019 through to December 2019, subject to government approvals.

Statewide the oil and gas industry continues to directly employ some 8000 people and will contribute an expected $447 million in royalties in 2018‑19. The Surat and southern Bowen basins account for more than three quarters of the industry.

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