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1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2004  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 27/02/2004   
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Contents >> Energy >> Energy production

In examining Australia's energy production, it is important to distinguish between primary and derived (or secondary) energy. Primary energy products are forms of energy obtained directly from nature, including non-renewable fuels such as coal, natural gas and crude oil, and renewable fuels such as wood, hydro-electricity and solar energy. Derived energy products are fuels produced from another fuel, commonly a primary energy product. Derived energy products include electricity, petroleum products such as petrol and diesel, and coke (Bush et al. 1999).

Primary energy production

In 2000-01, Australia produced 15,237 PJ of primary energy (table 17.5). Black coal continues to dominate the pattern of energy production (as it has done for at least the last 20 years), accounting for nearly half of total energy production in 2000-01. Uranium accounted for 30% of total production, followed by crude oil and natural gas, both of which accounted for 9% of total production. Renewable energy production accounted for 267 PJ of total production.

17.5 PRODUCTION OF PRIMARY ENERGY

1990-91
1995-96
2000-01
Change from 1990-91
to 2000-01
Fuel
PJ
PJ
PJ
%

Black coal
4,396.0
5,232.0
6,859.7
56.0
Brown coal
484.1
514.4
664.7
37.3
Crude oil and LNG
1,182.3
1,119.3
1,432.1
21.1
LPG
94.0
96.7
107.5
14.4
Natural gas
840.4
1,204.1
1,405.9
67.3
Uranium
2,062.8
2,399.4
4,500.4
118.2
Wood
100.1
109.1
108.4
8.3
Bagasse
78.2
101.5
93.8
19.9
Hydro-electricity
58.0
57.8
60.4
4.1
Solar
2.4
3.5
4.4
83.3
Total
9,298.3
10,837.8
15,237.3
63.9

Source: ABARE, electronic datasets, Table N and Table H.

Graph 17.6 shows the production of non-renewable and renewable energy sources between 1973 and 2001. Over this period, the production of non-renewable fuels has shown an upward trend. In contrast, there has been little growth in the combined production of renewable energy sources (wood, bagasse, hydro-electricity and solar). Although production of renewable energy products increased from 197 PJ in 1973-74 to 267 PJ in 2000-01, its share of total primary energy production fell from around 7% to less than 2% over this period (graph 17.7).

Graph - 17.6 Production of primary fuels


Graph - 17.7 Production of renewable fuels

Derived energy production

Australia produces a variety of derived (or secondary) energy products. In 2000-01, the nation produced over 2,463 PJ of derived energy, comprising 1,573 PJ (or 64% of total production) of petroleum products, 721 PJ (29%) of electricity, and 164 PJ of coal-based products (table 17.8). Production of derived energy has increased by almost 25% since 1989-90, mainly due to significant increases in the production of electricity and aviation turbine fuel.

In 2000-01, Australian petroleum refineries used 44,708 megalitres (ML) of crude oil and other refinery feedstock to produce 43,490 ML of petroleum products (DITR, Australian Petroleum Statistics). Total refinery output has increased since 1989-90, due to increases in the production of transport-related petroleum products, including automotive petrol (up 17%), diesel (up 34%) and aviation turbine fuel (up 90%). In contrast, fuel oil production has decreased by 37% since 1989-90 - this is partly due to a reduction in the use of fuel oil in electricity generation (table 17.8).

In Australia, the generation of electricity overwhelmingly uses non-renewable primary energy products as inputs (graph 17.9). Black coal accounted for over 50% of total inputs used to generate electricity in 2000-01. Brown coal, used almost exclusively to generate electricity in Australia, accounts for 31% of total inputs. The use of natural gas by Australian electricity generators has grown strongly, increasing from 4.5% of total inputs in 1974-75 to 10.6% in 2000-01. Coal and natural gas have been increasingly used to generate electricity since 1974, and have gradually replaced the use of fuel oil.

Electricity generation from renewable sources, on the other hand, has not increased significantly over this time period. Excluding hydro-electricity (which by energy accounting definitions is considered a primary fuel), the main renewable energy used to generate electricity is biomass - mainly bagasse (sugar cane residue) and wood. Biomass accounted for only 1.4 PJ of electricity generated in 2000-01 (ABARE electronic datasets; ESAA 2002).

17.8 PRODUCTION OF DERIVED ENERGY

1989-90
1995-96
2000-01
Change from
2000-01
Fuel
PJ
PJ
PJ
%

Coal products
Coke
121.4
123.8
94.4
-22.2
Coal by-products
75.9
80.8
62.2
-18.1
Briquettes
15.6
10.1
7.5
-51.9
Petroleum products
Automotive gasoline(a)
556.5
624.2
651.6
17.1
Aviation gasoline
7.5
5.6
6.9
-8.0
Aviation turbine fuel
121.4
180.1
230.5
89.9
Kerosene
3.4
6.5
5.4
58.8
Fuel oil(b)
108.6
89.3
68.5
-36.9
Diesel(c)
402.5
474.2
540.1
34.2
Other petroleum products(d)
50.7
65.5
69.9
37.9
Electricity
502.5
581.2
721.0
43.5
Town gas
8.5
5.6
5.1
-40.0
Total
1,974.5
2,246.9
2,463.1
24.7

(a) Includes unleaded and leaded.
(b) Includes heating oil.
(c) Includes automotive diesel oil and industrial and marine diesel fuel.
(d) Includes solvents, lubricants and bitumen.
Source: ABARE, electronic datasets, Table B1.

Graph - 17.9 Fuel shares in electricity generation

The electricity supply industry has undergone substantial structural change over the last decade. The 1991 decision to introduce a national electricity market has resulted in the replacement of the traditional State-owned vertically integrated monopolies with businesses that compete within the same marketplace. Employment, sales and turnover continue to be affected by the changes caused by industry restructuring (table 17.10). Employment increased by 551 persons (2%) to 33,435 persons in 2000-01. Turnover in the electricity supply industry increased nationally by $2.0b (8%) to $27.4b. The majority of this increase was accounted for by a growth in the value of sales of goods and services of $1.5b (6%) to $25.4b although much of the increase was due to the statistical effects of industry restructuring rather than real growth.

17.10 SUMMARY OF OPERATIONS, ELECTRICITY INDUSTRY

Units
1998-99
1999-2000
2000-01

Employment at 30 June
no.
33,022
32,884
33,435
Sales of goods and services
$m
23,029.6
23,919.2
25,438.5
Turnover
$m
24,426.9
25,476.5
27,448.3

Source: Electricity, Gas, Water and Sewerage Operations, Australia (8226.0).


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