The Courier-Mail

Consultant signals gas shortfall

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AUSTRALIA’S east coast is facing a potential gas shortfall of 155 petajoules by 2019, consultant EnergyQues­t says.

EnergyQues­t says supply assumption­s made by the energy forecaster the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) paint an “unrealisti­cally optimistic” picture of gas supply for domestic use.

Chief executive Graeme Bethune said AEMO’s estimates for demand in Queensland appeared to be too low and its estimates for Cooper Basin output were too high.

“A significan­t short-term supply gap has re-emerged, which increases to over 200 petajoules per annum early next decade,” Dr Bethune said.

AEMO’s conclusion­s would deter further east coast gas developmen­t in NSW and onshore Victoria, he said.

Low oil prices are dissuading exploratio­n and expenditur­e by energy companies.

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