Golden rules of gas

June 2018June 2019
The project highlighted where there is most room for improvement and validated the importance of the rules in the Australian context.

Golden rules of gas

This research project had dual aims. First, it sought to understand the extent to which the experience of CSG development in Queensland reflected the "Golden Rules of Gas".  The second aim was to evaluate the Golden Rules themselves, as whether they adequately function as a tool for evaluating CSG developments and whether the rules have equal weight.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) issued a special report named Golden Rules for a Golden Age of Gas (International Energy Agency, 2012)  containing 22 principles  – called Golden Rules – for unconventional gas development. The rules were proposed in the context of expected increase in gas demand and production globally, and the apparent opposition to unconventional gas in many jurisdictions, both among the general public and in some instances governments.

The Golden Rules were intended to constitute good practice standards for addressing the environmental and social impacts of the unconventional gas industry. The IEA argued that a sustained and successful effort from both governments and operators might be necessary in order to convince the public that impacts and risks from the unconventional gas industry are “acceptably small”.

The objective of the Golden Rules were to suggest what might be required to maintain or obtain a “social licence to operate” for the unconventional gas industry.

The Centre for Natural Gas undertook to assess the experience of CSG development in Queensland and to validate whether the rules were applicable in the Australian context.


  • Project status: Complete
  • Project leader: Dr Katherine Witt
  • Research group: The University of Queensland Centre for Natural Gas (formerly known as The University of Queensland Centre for Coal Seam Gas)
  • Timeframe: June 2018 - June 2019
  • Project funders: APLNG, Arrow Energy, QGC, Santos, University of Queensland


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