Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 Brought Before Parliament

Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill 2018 Brought Before Parliament

Northern Territory Minister for Primary Industry and Resources Ken Vowles

Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill Introduced

Victor P Taffa

Northern Territory Government has today introduced to Parliament the Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill as part of its plan to implement all 135 recommendations of the Independent Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing.

Key amendments in the Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill include:

  • Providing provisions for open standing judicial review for decisions under the Petroleum Act and Petroleum (Environment) Regulations;
  • Ensuring oil and gas companies, as applicants, are “fit and proper” to hold exploration permits or production licences.

“Territory Government accepted all 135 recommendations from the Independent Scientific Inquiry into Hydraulic Fracturing.” Minister for Primary Industry and Resources Ken Vowles said.

“These proposed amendments will strengthen regulation and increase the transparency of the decision-making process for matters relating to the onshore gas industry in the Territory.”

A number of the Inquiry’s recommendations require the creation of Codes of Practice for the onshore gas industry. These amendments to the Petroleum Act will ensure oil and gas companies are legally required to abide by those Codes, and can be penalised if breaches occur.

Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill has now been referred to the Economic Scrutiny committee, which will return this Bill to the Legislative Assembly in March 2019.