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08 May 2000 - 00/140
New Report reveals petroleum reserves increase
A new industry report released today shows oil and condensate reserves have reached a 10-year high of 3530 million barrels. Australia's oil and condensate and gas reserves have increased as a result of new resource discoveries and through re-examination of existing oil and condensate and gas reserves. The figures were announced by the Hon. Warren Entsch MP, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Industry, Science and Resources.
New reserve estimates have been published in the Oil and Gas Resources of Australia 1999 released today by the Australian Geological Survey Organisation (AGSO) at the first day of the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association's (APPEA) annual conference.
Australia's commercial and non-commercial oil and condensate reserves have continued to grow over the last 10 years and are currently shown to be at 3530 million barrels - an increase of 6 percent over 1997 levels. Current gas reserves increased in 1998 to 98 trillion cubic feet, an 18 percent rise over 1997 reserves.
"In addition, large gas discoveries made in 1999 and in the first quarter of this year will provide further security for Australia's petroleum supplies by adding significantly to our gas reserves," Mr Entsch said today.
AGSO's Oil and Gas Australia 1999 is an important information resource for the petroleum exploration industry, providing estimates of future crude oil and condensate production, summaries of exploration activity, field developments, production and expenditure for petroleum in Australia.
An associated AGSO publication, The Petroleum Exploration and Development Activity Report, reports the number of offshore exploration wells drilled in the first quarter of this year maintains the increased level of offshore activity seen in the last quarter of 1999. Seismic survey acquisitions have also increased significantly by the end of the March quarter and is now almost one-half of the total amount throughout the whole of 1999.
"Despite earlier forecasts of uncertainty in the industry there seems to be optimism that offshore exploration activity will be maintained throughout 2000 at the previous year's level of approximately 54 wells," Mr Entsch said.
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