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:
- the Petroleum Act 1984 is the principal legislation dealing with petroleum tenure, exploration and production activities onshore and inland waters of the NT
- the Petroleum (Submerged Lands) Act 1981 caters for tenure, exploration and production activities in the 3 nautical mile strip of NT coastal waters
- the Petroleum (Environment) Regulations 2016 ensures the environment is protected in an area of petroleum exploration or production
- the NT Schedule of Onshore Petroleum Exploration and Production Requirements assists with regulation of onshore petroleum exploration and production activities.
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.
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
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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