The government will spend $58 million on natural gas projects to ensure Australia doesn't experience a projected shortfall of gas by 2024.
Announced ahead of the federal budget, $38.7 million of the funding will go to four gas infrastructure projects the government has identified as priorities to prevent gas shortfall. The projects include two gas storage projects at Golden Beach and Iona in Victoria, an expansion of the South West Victorian pipeline and an import terminal project, most likely at Port Kembla.
Another $3.5 million will go to designing and implementing a framework for future investment in gas infrastructure, to support consideration of medium to long-term gas projects.
The government will release an interim report for the national gas infrastructure plan on Friday and an extra $5.6 million in funding will go towards delivering a new gas infrastructure plan in 2022.
A further $4.6 million will go towards helping businesses that are reliant on gas to negotiate better prices on their supply and $6.2 million will go to the development of the Wallumbilla gas supply hub in Queensland.
"Gas is a critical enabler of Australia's economy and helps to support our manufacturing sector that employs over 900,000 Australians," Energy Minister Angus Taylor said.
"The government will not sit back and allow the shortfall to eventuate - the risk to the economy is too great. Without action to address supply, industry and households will be faced with higher prices, disruptions in supply and unplanned outages."
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