Govt invests $9.6M in gas exploration research
A research programme which aims to lift the success rate of oil and gas exploration has received $9.6 million of government funding.
GNS Science's research is receiving the most funding out of $96.4M, announced this week, the Government has awarded to projects ranging from 3D printing to waterproof roads.
The four-year-project is also getting $100,000-a-year from international oil exploration companies Anadarko, ExxonMobil, OMV, and Shell - three of which already operate in New Zealand.
GNS will develop data products for the exploration industry that will help to reduce the uncertainties involved in petroleum exploration in New Zealand's sedimentary basins.
It will improve the understanding of the rock formations that generate petroleum, the relationships between petroleum fluids and their source rocks, and the way petroleum moves and is trapped in sub-surface structures.
Modest-sized finds such as the Tui Field in 2003 had dramatically increased New Zealand's gross domestic product, programme Leader Richard Sykes says.
The Government would use the research to inform decisions on new acreage for permitting to attract new exploration investment in New Zealand.
The data would promote more competitive bidding and increase the chances of new discoveries, Mr Sykes said.
GNS Science is leading the research, supported by international and New Zealand universities and the Institute of Environmental Science and Research.
The 48 government-funded projects also include medical implants, insecticides, dairy goat infant formula, dental diagnostics, sensors, self-cleaning ceramic coatings, family violence prevention and aquifer management.
Science and Innovation Minister Steven Joyce says the research funding will help boost productivity and competitiveness.