1 February 2016

WA:ERA & NRSP join forces to boost research capability and impact


Research partners CSIRO, Curtin University and The University of Western Australia are integrating WA:ERA and the NRSP under a single Chair and CEO to grow capability in Perth and enhance industry impact for the oil, gas and resources industries and to boost key exports from our State and nation.

Retiring WA:ERA Chair and oil and gas industry pioneer, David Agostini, said: “It was a privilege to help CSIRO, Curtin and UWA establish the Western Australian Energy Research Alliance in 2003 and to guide it until 2016. Initial support of $20m from the WA Government was critical, as well as $48.4m in capital from the Federal Government for a National Geosequestration Laboratory and ongoing research staff and project funding from industry partners Woodside, Chevron and Shell.”

“Integrating WA:ERA with the National Resource Sciences Precinct makes great sense and we are lucky to have someone of the stature of Graeme Hunt prepared to chair both bodies supported by WA:ERA CEO Kym Bills who is taking on the additional role of Director of the NRSP”, Mr Agostini said.

Since the NRSP was launched in April 2014 it has built, with support from SIEF, major new capability in advanced resource characterisation from the atomic scale to assessing likely new commercial size resource deposits. Under Graeme Hunt’s chairmanship, the NRSP Steering Committee includes the CEO of CSIRO, the Vice Chancellors of Curtin and UWA, the Director-General of the WA Department of Mines and Petroleum, the Chief Scientist of WA, and the CEO of Geoscience Australia.

NRSP Chair and Managing Director of Broadspectrum, Graeme Hunt said: “I want to acknowledge David Agostini’s distinguished service to WA:ERA since 2003 and am delighted that he will remain on the WA:ERA Board to assist with my role as Chair and on the WA:ERA Industry Advisory Group”.

“When industry conditions are challenging, optimising research governance is very important and we will ensure that the NRSP takes a strategic role to further build critical mass and capability for the benefit of both the oil and gas and minerals sectors. We intend to leverage co-location with the new Australian Energy Resources Growth Centre and a node of the mining growth centre, METS Ignited”.

“The two sectors will learn from each other, while cross-cutting issues and technologies like cost competitiveness, remote operations, sensors, and big data analytics provide key research linkages”.

“The next 5 years will be exciting as the NRSP and WA:ERA work with our industry and government partners to establish Perth as a global centre of excellence for diversified resource R&D. LNG 18 in Perth in April 2016 will provide an early platform to showcase industry collaboration”, Mr Hunt said.

For further information contact Kym Bills on T:08 6436 8782 or M:0419 241 496