Sustainability

Electric vehicle

Increased sustainability and improved responsible management

As we move to a lower carbon economy, transitional fuels like gas, low carbon technologies like carbon capture and storage, and new energy sources like hydrogen will be essential.

In addition, Australia is well-placed to build a world class critical minerals sector, which is essential for advanced technologies, such as renewable energy, battery technology and transportation.

    Our work supports

    • Increased sustainability underpinned by thriving low emissions energy and critical minerals sectors.
    • Improved responsible management of natural resources and the environment.

    Featured work

    Aerial view of Brisbane at night

    Australia’s Future Energy Resources

    This project is evaluating the potential for new energy commodities hosted within sedimentary basins, including oil, natural gas and hydrogen, to support Australia’s transition to a low carbon economy. It will also assess the optimal locations for green and blue hydrogen production, including storage areas.  

    Australia’s Future Energy Resources Read about the project
    Hydrogen map

    Evaluating the economic fairways for hydrogen production in Australia

    Assessments of hydrogen project viability typically focus on evaluating specific sites for development, or providing generic cost-estimates that are independent of location. In reality, the success of hydrogen projects will be intimately linked to the availability of local energy resources, access to key infrastructure and water supplies, and the distance to export ports and energy markets. 

    Evaluating the economic fairways for hydrogen production in Australia Read the journal paper
    Nickel map

    Mapping the future of nickel and cobalt

    The global transition towards clean and sustainable transport and energy is highly dependent on the supply of critical minerals such as cobalt (Co), graphite, lithium (Li), nickel (Ni), platinum group elements (PGEs) and rare earth elements (REEs). For example, the International Energy Agency forecast global demand for Ni and Co to increase ~20-40 fold by 2040. 

    Mapping the future of nickel and cobalt Read the news story
    Hydrogen Economic Fairways Tool (HEFT)

    Mapping Australia’s hydrogen future

    To support implementation of Australia's National Hydrogen Strategy, Geoscience Australia in collaboration with Monash University have released the Hydrogen Economic Fairways Tool (HEFT). 

    Mapping Australia’s hydrogen future Read the case study
    Data integration for greenfields exploration: an example from the East Tennant region, Northern Territory

    Data integration for greenfields exploration: an example from the East Tennant region, Northern Territory

    Schofield A, Clark A, Doublier MP, Murr J, Skirrow R, Goodwin J, Cross AJ, Pitt L, Duan J, Jiang W, Wynne P, O’Rourke A, Czarnota K and Roach IC (2020)

    Data integration for greenfields exploration: an example from the East Tennant region, Northern Territory Read the extended abstract
    city view from above

    Case studies

    Our case studies showcase our work, community stories, and emerging benefits and impacts of the Exploring for the Future program.  
     

    Case studies Read case studies

    Other impact areas

    Installing solar panels

    Informed decisions

    Effective evidence-based decision-making between landholders, traditional owners, public, government and industry.

    Informed decisions Learn more
    Alice Springs

    Prosperity

    Growing economic prosperity and social well-being through resource development, investment in resource exploration, new job creation and responsible agricultural planning. 

    Prosperity Learn more
    Water security

    Water security

    Improved water security for households, agriculture and industry.

    Water security Learn more
    Outback rural landscape with red earth, dry rivers and green trees, Australia, aerial view

    Understanding what lies beneath

    The Australian Government’s Exploring for the Future program, led by Geoscience Australia, is dedicated to supporting a strong economy, resilient society and sustainable environment for the benefit of Australians through an integrated geoscientific understanding of our mineral, energy and groundwater resource potential.

    Launched in 2016, the first 4 years of the program (2016–20) initially focused on northern Australia. Based on the program’s success it was extended (2020–24) and expanded across the whole of Australia.

    Drawing together data, science and innovative techniques and technology, the program enables us to map undercover and underexplored areas. This in turn encourages new investment in ‘greenfield’ areas by providing security and certainty to our minerals, energy and agriculture sectors as we transition towards a sustainable, low-emissions future.

    The evidence gathered through the program is already translating into real impacts, providing industry and communities with vital information they need to confidently plan, make better informed decisions and invest in new developments.

    The Exploring for the Future impact pathway summarises how the program will realise its vision.