The Morrison Government is taking action to increase Australia’s onshore diesel stockholdings, create jobs and keep fuel prices low for consumers.
Applications are now open for the Boosting Australia’s Diesel Storage program, which is a key part of the Government’s comprehensive fuel security package to secure Australia’s long-term fuel supply and bolster local industry.
The program is intended to create new jobs and protect workers in fuel dependent industries, including manufacturing, resources, agriculture and transport. Diesel is crucial to Australia’s energy security as it underpins our critical infrastructure, transport sector and important industries, such as mining and agriculture. It is also critical during an emergency for essential services.
Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction Angus Taylor said Australia’s fuel security was essential for our national security and underpins our entire economy.
“The Morrison Government will oversee the roll-out of the diesel program this year, which will not only create jobs, but will help to make sure Australian families and businesses can access the fuel they need, when they need it,” Minister Taylor said.
“Fuel, and diesel in particular, is the lifeblood of so many sectors in our economy, including our farmers, truckies and tradies. It is essential that we get the right balance and location of our onshore stockholdings.
“Increasing Australia’s capacity to store diesel complements our other fuel security measures. This will strengthen our ability to manage potential disruptions, protect Australian motorists from future high prices, and keep our economy moving.”
The package also includes backing the local refining sector through a production payment that values the fuel security benefits provided by a sovereign refining capability and creating a minimum stockholding obligation for key transport fuels.
Through the Boosting Australia’s Diesel Storage Program, the Government will provide up to $200 million in competitive grants over three years to support the construction of an additional 780 megalitres of onshore diesel storage.
These projects will help to further enhance Australia’s fuel security and create around 1,000 jobs, supporting the Government’s JobMaker Plan as the nation continues to recover from COVID-19.
Successful projects will receive grants of up to $33.3 million, with the Government covering up to 50 per cent of total eligible project expenditure. Projects are expected to commence construction from mid-2021 and be completed within three years.
The Government seeks to target projects that enhance fuel security by being in a strategic regional location or that are connected to existing fuel infrastructure.
The program will also assist industry in meeting the new minimum stockholding obligation by 2024. The obligation will require industry to hold around 40 per cent more diesel than current levels.