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Fuel Simulation

WESTERN Australia will participate in a June simulation to test Australia’s ability to manage a fuel shortage.

A representative from Energy Safety, a branch within the WA Department of Consumer and Employment Protection will attend a two-day planning workshop in Canberra this month.

On the first day, industry and governments are expected to determine all issues under consideration.

The second day will concentrate on the formation of a coordinated plan covering the different levels of government.

Director of Energy Safety Albert Koenig said his office was well positioned to deal with fuel emergencies.

Energy Safety has developed emergency plans and a good communications network over the past six years.

The June 18 national paper exercise will test whether systems already in place really worked, and help to ensure that plans can be coordinated across the different jurisdictions in Australia.

WA is not considered self-sufficient in fuel supply and the main priority will be to maintain staple supply to emergency services, hospitals and industry.

Should any fuel shortage have national implications, the Governor General can declare a national liquid fuel emergency under the Liquid Fuel Emergency Act.

A Department of Industry, Tourism and Resources spokesperson said that, as a member of the International Energy Agency, Australia had to have a “petroleum product demand restraint program, which can be readily activated”.

Australia is also required to “hold reserve oil stocks equivalent to 90 days net oil import consumption”.

WA’s Office of Energy Safety is a member of the National Oil Supplies Emergency Committee and the State Emergency Management Committee.

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