After a jam-packed schedule of diverse topics, captivating content and industry leading presenters, Day Three of APPEA focused on next steps.
Following a ‘Confetti of Light’ Conference Dinner last night, the stage was set for putting a spotlight on what the industry can look forward to in the coming days and months – but only if we’re all ready and in the driver’s seat.
We need to all share our thoughts and ideas and hear each other’s voices – in order to navigate the future and drive a cleaner energy outcome.
It was clear today that there is a range of challenges and opportunities to address. Further energy supply, especially for East Coast Australia, is of paramount importance. We are living in a complicated but exciting time for the industry.
Based on all the speakers and presenters from Day Three, here are five key statements to consider:
#1 Continued investment is needed across the industry
Demand for natural gas continues to grow substantially in Australia and around the world as part of a cleaner energy future. We might see supply tighten in the future, with flow on effects for pricing.
It’s also a great time of opportunity and speakers reflected on maximising new developments and innovation. The market will respond positively to our competitively priced gas.
It was argued that new supply is needed for the East Coast gas market. With growing demand for natural gas and a decline of conventional supplies, there was much discussion on what the market needs. This is not a small matter as the magnitude will be significant and have impacts across domestic consumers and industries. The significant level of investment required will demand a policy stability and a pragmatic approach. It’s imperative that Australia is competitive both in today’s gas production and our ability to attract our fair share of future investment.
#2 Be proud of what we have achieved and where we are going: what’s next?
Oil and gas has got a lot to be proud of. Australia recently overtook Qatar to become the world’s largest exporter of LNG.
From a next steps perspective, speakers recounted how a long term energy policy is needed – that promotes investment, supply and demand. Transparent dialogue is needed and we must all work together in new and innovative ways to increase the competitiveness of our gas internationally.
When it comes to the East Coast, session speakers explored potential future scenarios and emphasised the need to explore for and develop new resources. Security of supply and sustainable prices were major themes and the uncertain supply outlook will need to be addressed.
It’s time to unlock the next wave of ideas and opportunities. The best way to be ready for the future is to encourage investment and develop new projects and new infrastructure.
#3 Innovation is the heartbeat of change
How can we unlock the power of the future?
Speakers articulated that we are often in the midst of juxtapositions. Supply and demand, price fluctuation, international competitiveness, emissions and more.
There’s an opportunity to use innovation as a driver and to face these challenges as one – united in support, commitment and focus.
Collectively, there’s an opportunity to re-think our approach to change and the future.
Certainty of supply and pricing is needed. This can only be achieved if we work collaboratively to unlock innovation and new ideas.
Australia has done an incredible job so far – but there’s more to do.
#4 Building trust is absolutely vital
Concurrent session speakers today focused on how our understanding of community is certainly changing. The sense of what community stands for is anchored in the feeling of connectivity, built on a foundation of trust. And across this energy landscape, social licence to operate is imperative.
Stakeholder co-operation and collaboration is critical. When it comes to social licence there needs to be a robust process in place around information, communication and sharing of facts – with transparency a key focus.
It’s about leaders and organisations asking:
How can information be shared? How can transparency be increased? What is being held back? What is the emotional attachment between the licencee and licensor? How can it be measured?
Sessions focused on the fact that social licence is all about interactions – and these can be both scalable and changeable. Social license is very difficult to get – and also very easy to lose. And once you’ve lost it, it is difficult to get back.
Social licence is one of the most critical risks in relation to projects – across the globe and in Australia.
The industry is on a constant journey. Communities want to know how projects will impact their interests and be equipped with current information that helps them effectively engage with stakeholders.
#5 Optimism is in the air
Time to recap!
From plenaries to powerful insights, case studies to collaborative approaches, the week at APPEA has been filled with a diversity of events, discussions and more.
Across the conference landscape, delegates have been involved in robust discussions and immersed themselves in thinking through the processes, ideas and options for navigating the future.
So as we circle back to the start, it’s important that we come full circle and ask:
What role will you play in Australia’s energy landscape? How can we all contribute to a cleaner energy future? What ideas at this year’s APPEA Conference have sparked your interest? What do these issues mean for tomorrow?
An enormous thank you goes out to all the wonderful APPEA speakers, presenters, poster displays, authors, experts, panel contributors, organising groups, teams and more – who have brought to life a forum that is brimming with ideas, possibility and future-focused strategies.
As the 2019 Conference comes to a close, we are now all equipped with tools, insights and ideas to fuel a dynamic, prosperous, sustainable and innovative energy future.