Feb 1, 2011

Inquiry into the security of the offshore oil and gas sector

Inquiry into the security of the offshore oil and gas sector

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

Minister for Infrastructure & Transport

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

February 1 2011

In response to the growing threats from international terrorism and piracy, the Gillard Labor Government has commissioned the first ever comprehensive review into the security of our nation’s offshore oil and gas facilities.

I have directed the Inspector of Transport Security, Mick Palmer AO, to conduct this review so we can be assured that these vital national assets are sufficiently protected.

An act of terrorism against anyone of them would not only be extremely damaging to our natural environment but also very costly to our economy. This growing sector already employs more than 10,000 Australians and generates over $22 billion in annual export earnings.

While at this time there’s no specific threat against any of our facilities, I believe we must remain vigilant. That’s why we are taking pre-emptive action to make sure our security arrangements are equal to the emerging threats.

The inquiry will look at:

  • Government and industry relationships, communication and coordination;
  • The nature and extent of current security control and oversight arrangements;
  • The development and implementation of security programs;
  • Possible sea and landside security gaps and areas for improvement;
  • The economic, environmental and economic cost of a violent takeover of any offshore oil or gas infrastructure;
  • Coastal and high seas shipping routes used in the transport of oil and gas products;
  • The supply and support of offshore platforms and facilities used to deliver building components for offshore oil and gas fields.

The Inquiry will include federal, state and territory agencies, ship owners, port operators, and operators of offshore facilities.

Mr Palmer has been asked to provide a draft report by late 2011.