1301.0 - Year Book Australia, 2012
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 24/05/2012
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Statistics contained in the Year Book are the most recent available at the time of preparation. In many cases, the ABS website and the websites of other organisations provide access to more recent data. Each Year Book table or graph and the bibliography at the end of each chapter provides hyperlinks to the most up to date data release where available.
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MINERAL, OIL AND GAS RESOURCES
The statistics on identified mineral resources provided in table 18.9 are obtained from Australia's Identified Mineral Resources publication produced by Geoscience Australia. They provide an indication of the extent of mineral resources available for extraction, with the main focus being on economic demonstrated resources (EDR).
EDR is a measure of the resources that are established, analytically demonstrated or assumed with reasonable certainty to be profitable for extraction or production under defined investment assumptions. Classifying a mineral resource as EDR reflects a high degree of certainty as to the size and quality of the resource and its economic viability.
Table 18.9 shows the importance of the main mineral resources in Australia as at December 2009.
In terms of Australia's ranking in world holdings of EDR, in 2009, Australia had the world's largest EDR of brown coal (recoverable), lead, rutile, zircon, nickel, uranium and zinc, and ranked second in the world for bauxite, copper, gold, iron ore, ilmenite, silver and tantalum. In addition, Australia's EDR for industrial diamonds was ranked third and manganese ore was ranked fourth largest in the world.
(a) Geoscience Australia estimate.
(b) Quantity measured in contained metal.
(c) Detailed data are not available on world resources of gem/near gem diamond but Australia has one of the largest stocks for this category.
(d) From OECD Nuclear Energy Agency and International Atomic Energy Agency (OECD/NEA & IAEA) (2009). Compiled from the most recent data for resources recoverable at <US$80 per kilogram of uranium.
Source: Geoscience Australia, Australia's Identified Mineral Resources, 2010.
The most significant increase in Australia's mineral EDR between 2008 and 2009 was recorded for gold (18%), followed by iron ore (17%) (table 18.10). However, the EDR of nickel was down 9%, while mineral sands fell by 4%.
OIL AND GAS RESOURCES
Australia's oil and gas resources encompass crude oil, condensate (a liquid mixture of pentane and heavier hydrocarbons that is recoverable from a gas well through a separation system), naturally occurring liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and natural gas. Economic demonstrated resources (EDR) for oil and gas are resources that are judged to be economically extractable and for which the quantity and quality are computed partly from specific measurements, and partly from extrapolation for a reasonable distance on geological evidence. Subeconomic demonstrated resources (SDR) are similar to EDR in terms of certainty of occurrence but are considered to be potentially economic only in the future.
The information presented in table 18.11 was obtained from the annual report Oil and Gas Resources of Australia, produced by Geoscience Australia. Between the start of 2006 and 2010, EDR for condensate increased by 82 gigalitres or 32%. The EDR of sales gas (natural gas for sale after treatment to remove impurities) increased by 550 billion cubic metres or 23%, while the EDR of LPG fell by 48 gigalitres (22%) over this period. In 2010, estimated crude oil reserves fell to 2006 levels. SDR for all oil and gas resources remained well below the levels of 2006.