The Northern Territory Government has lifted a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing of onshore gas.
The decision will open up more than half of the territory’s land mass to the controversial practice.
The NT Government will enforce a regulatory regime and new laws around the practice, with Chief Minister Michael Gunner saying all 135 recommendations of a recent inquiry into fracking will be implemented in full.
The independent probe found the risks associated with hydraulic fracturing of gas deposits could be managed and regulated.
The issue has been strongly divisive among residents, with many expressing concerns fracking threatens water supplies; however, Mr Gunner insists the industry will create jobs.
He says the Government has accepted the inquiry’s advice about no-go zones.
Petroleum companies are expected to begin exploration fracking early next year.