20 Oct 2012

Santos begins shale gas production

7:39 am on 20 October 2012

Santos has begun production at Australia's first commercial shale gas well in the Cooper Basin.

On Friday the company began natural gas production from its Moomba-191 shale well, which is 350 metres from the existing pipeline and 8km from the processing plant.

"This is clearly a landmark for Australia's natural gas industry," said Santos Eastern Australia vice president James Baulderstone in a statement.

AAP reports that producing commercial quantities of natural gas from the Cooper Basin's shale rock formations would provide potential for ongoing energy security as well as valuable export revenue.

Santos said further drilling was planned for the area.