Stages of Implementation

The Inquiry recommendations will be delivered in three stages aligned with major milestones as the industry develops.

Stage One – Planning

Stage One outlined the tasks following the lifting of the moratorium.

It covered setting up the governance arrangements for implementation, establishing the Onshore Shale Gas Community and Business Reference Group and starting work on some of the major reform areas.

The Implementation Plan is the major milestone achieved in Stage One.

Stage Two – Preparing for Exploration

Stage Two comprises implementing the recommendations that need to be done early including those that the Inquiry determined must be complete before any exploration involving drilling or hydraulic fracturing and stimulation of unconventional wells.

The recommendations summarised in table 16.1 of the report are:

  • developing a Codes of Practice for industry
  • transfer of environmental decisions regarding petroleum activities from the Minister for Primary Industry and Resources to the Minister for Environment and Natural Resources
  • baseline mapping and ongoing monitoring regimes for weeds, methane emissions and water quality near proposed drilling sites
  • commencement of a broader Strategic Regional Environmental and Baseline Assessment (SREBA).

Stage Two actions are required to be in place prior to the 2019 Dry Season.

Stage Three – Exploration and Preparing for Production

Stage Three covers the balance of the Inquiry recommendations and will take a number of years to complete.

It must be completed before any production approvals are granted for unconventional gas.

Many of the actions in Stage Three are still in planning and the detailed approach will be published in online updates to this plan.

Actions in Stage Three may commence before Stage Two is complete.

Last Updated:
04 Aug 2022