2015 Gas Statement of Opportunities

by Energy Action | May 15, 2015
The Australian Energy Market Operator’s 2015 Gas Statement of Opportunities forecasts no supply gaps for any of Australia’s eastern and south-eastern gas markets over the short-term to 2019.

Lower than forecast consumption levels, most notably in the industrial sector within Queensland and New South Wales, combined with upgrades to gas market infrastructure, have alleviated short-term supply gaps that were initially forecast by the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) in its previous Gas Statement of Opportunities (GSOO) update in mid-2014.

The 2015 GSOO reports on the adequacy of eastern and south-eastern Australian gas markets to supply maximum demand and annual consumption, as forecast in the 2014 National Gas Forecasting Report (NGFR) published in December 2014.

The NGFR expected combined industrial, residential and commercial gas consumption to fall from 447 petajoules (PJ) in 2015 to 425 PJ in 2034. This is a sharper decline than AEMO reported in the May 2014 GSOO Update, and as a result forecast gaps in gas supply are lower in the 2015 GSOO than they were in the 2014 GSOO Update.

In delivering the report, AEMO’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Matt Zema said “Australia’s eastern and south-eastern gas markets are experiencing rapid transformational change. The 2015 GSOO points to a 17% forecast decline in New South Wales’ gas consumption in 2019 and identifies crucial upgrades to gas market infrastructure, such as the commissioning of the Newcastle LNG storage facility.”

“A fall in the forecast demand, increased capacity of the Victoria–New South Wales interconnector, and upgrades to the Moomba–Sydney and Moomba–Adelaide pipelines, all reduce the potential for supply gaps in the short term,” Mr Zema said.

The 2015 GSOO also confirms that the Victorian Declared Transmission System (DTS) can supply the maximum forecast 1-in-20-year gas demand of 1,257 TJ per day from 2015–2019.

The GSOO sets out the Short term and Medium/long-term supply outlooks in detail as follows:

Short-term supply adequacy outlook (2015 to 2019)

  • In line with lower forecast gas consumption, no regions should expect gas supply gaps.
  • In New South Wales, where a gas supply gap had previously been forecast, no gap is now expected. This is due to a 17% decline in the 2019 forecast for industrial, residential and commercial gas consumption. In addition, upgrades to gas market infrastructure, the commissioning of the 1.5 PJ Newcastle liquefied natural gas (LNG) storage facility and an increase in the capacity of the Victoria – New South Wales Interconnect have all alleviated gas supply gaps.

Medium and long-term supply adequacy outlook (2020 to 2034)

  • The only forecast medium and long-term supply gaps are in Queensland.
  • Forecast gas supply gaps to 2034 in Queensland are 214 PJ, consisting predominantly of gas-powered generation (GPG) supply. There are no forecast supply gaps for LNG export.
  • These forecast supply gaps are down from the 1,000 PJ anticipated in the 2013 GSOO, largely due to lower gas consumption and maximum daily demand forecasts following the reduction in industrial consumption across eastern and south-eastern gas markets.
  • To meet current medium-term and long-term forecast gas consumption, it may be necessary to extract approximately 5,000 PJ from undeveloped reserves found mainly in the Cooper, Otway and Gippsland Basins.

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