About petroleum activities

The Northern Territory (NT) owns all petroleum resources - both onshore and in coastal waters in the NT.

The Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade administers and regulates petroleum tenure and activities in these areas.

This includes petroleum resource exploration and development and the construction and operation of oil and gas facilities and transmission pipelines.


Petroleum exploration and production is governed by the following legislation:

Exploration and production in waters beyond the three mile limit comes under the Australian Government's National Offshore Petroleum Titles Administrator (NOPTA).

For more information about offshore petroleum, go to the Australian Government's NOPTA website.

Petroleum titles

Before any petroleum exploration or production can commence, you must have a petroleum title.

Read more about petroleum titles .

Approval for exploration and production

When you have been granted a petroleum title you will need to apply for approval to conduct any exploration or production activity.

Read more about applying for approval for petroleum exploration and production activity and petroleum pipelines .

Report an activity

If you witness any activity which concerns you, you can report it to the Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade by calling 08 8999 6350 or emailing petroleum.operations@nt.gov.au.

The department will then investigate the issues you raise.

You may choose to notify the department anonymously or leave your name and phone number if you would like someone from the department to get back to you.

Last updated: 28 September 2020

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