Western Australia is set to join the World Bank initiative and increase regulation as it commits to reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

The state is the first Australian jurisdiction to join the World Bank’s Zero Routine Flaring by 2030 initiative to more efficiently manage natural gas resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The initiative claims flaring by petroleum companies across the globe annually burns about 140 billion cubic metres of natural gas and emits more than 300 million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

The WA Government says the initiative is focused on routine wellhead flaring during production, not exploration testing and emergency situations, or at oil refineries such as Kwinana.

“This commitment will be reinforced by strengthening regulation as part of the implementation of the recommendations from the independent scientific inquiry into hydraulic fracture stimulation, which includes amendments to regulations under the Petroleum and Geothermal Energy Resources Act and the Petroleum (Submerged Lands) Act,” a WA government statement read.

“The Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety consulted industry, the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association, and government agencies before recommending that Western Australia should support the initiative.”

Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston claimed the move as another first for Western Australia as a world-leading mining jurisdiction.

“At the heart of all the research and consultation that led to this recommendation is a simple premise: if you’ve got gas, either sell it or inject it back into the ground, but don’t burn it,” he said.

“Regulation of petroleum activities in Western Australia will be further strengthened when the McGowan Government implements recommendations of the scientific inquiry into fracking.

WA government’s minerals research investment pays dividends

A report into the Minerals Research Institute of Western Australia (MRIWA) has revealed the positive impact of investment in minerals research, according to the State Government.

MRIWA is a statutory body established by the WA Government to stimulate minerals research to support investment in, and operation of, a globally competitive minerals industry in Western Australia.

The report shows for every $1 million invested by government there are $3.12 million in direct benefits to WA.

It also forecast MRIWA to deliver 91 jobs a year in the next 10 years.

ACIL Allen’s economic impact assessment found that funding for MRIWA, and its corresponding impact on the mining industry, provides a significant boost to the WA economy and enhances our reputation globally in the technology and innovation value chain.

MRIWA’s research program is forecast to deliver $121.5 million in real income benefits to Western Australian businesses, people and government agencies in the next 10 years.

The State Government-funded initiative had a portfolio of research projects valued at $37.3 million, in 2017 18, with $22 million co-invested by other parties.

For more information on MRIWA, click here.