Queensland okays Aussie oil shale project

Australia’s Queensland state government said it will allow Queensland Energy Resources Ltd. to proceed with efforts to develop commercial oil shale operations at a Gladstone plant, provided QER comply with environmental requirements, the government said.

QER built a small-scale plant to produce ultralow-sulfur diesel, jet fuel, and other transportation fuels.

In 2008, the Queensland government imposed a 2-year moratorium on oil shale projects, halting the proposed QER project in the McFarlane deposit about 15 km south of Proserpine (OGJ Online, Aug. 25, 2008.)

The development approval was announced by Natural Resources and Mines Minister Andrew Cripps in Gladstone on Feb. 13.

“Under the new policy, existing operator [QER] will be able to proceed,” Cripps said. “But new entrants to the industry will need to prove their oil shale extraction technologies through trials.”

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