Exploring for the Future

As part of a wider Australian Government initiative  to boost exploration for resources in northern Australia, Geoscience Australia  (GA) is leading the four-year Exploring for the Future (EFTF) program to help  identify potential mineral, energy, and groundwater resources across the  region.

EFTF is generating new  geoscience data on existing and potential resource-rich regions to reduce risk  for private investors, and improve the likelihood of important discoveries.

The organisation’s leading  scientists and technicians are using innovative tools and techniques to gather  new data and information including: airborne electromagnetic surveys,  stratigraphic drilling, deep seismic reflection and gravity surveys,  geochemistry, and magnetotelluric mapping. Combining  all these datasets will mean northern Australia is one of the most thoroughly  mapped parts of the Earth’s crust.

Geoscience Australia is working with a range  of stakeholders, including state and territory  government agencies, local councils, pastoral leaseholders, local  indigenous groups, and Land Councils to deliver the program.

The new information will  help to improve government, industry and community understanding of the  potential resources available. For example, new groundwater information  will support Australia's environmental  outcomes. The program is integrating several methods to build a comprehensive  picture of groundwater resources in several targeted areas, ensuring  communities have access to water supply, and the development of sustainable  agriculture is supported.

Installing Manetotelluric data collection equipment in the NT to better understand geological structure deep below the ground.

Above: Installing Manetotelluric data collection equipment in the NT  to better understand geological structure deep below the ground.

A recent release of soil  geochemistry data over completed between Mt Isa and Tennant Creek reveal new  potential areas for copper, zinc and nickel. The data are also valuable for  agricultural management and environmental monitoring. Farmers can use the data  and maps to assess soil fertility and inform  sustainable crop production and cattle grazing  management over areas  such as the Barkly Tableland region of the NT and Queensland.

The data will be made publicly  available and published  on an ongoing basis through  the Exploring for  the Future website.

Vibroseis trucks alongside the Barkly Highway, Queensland, working on the South Nicholson Basin seismic line

Above: Vibroseis trucks alongside the Barkly Highway, Queensland,  working on the South Nicholson Basin seismic line

For further information visit the Geoscience Australia, phone +61 2 6249 9111 (Mon-Fri, 9am to 5pm AEST) or email eftf@ga.gov.au

Last updated: 30 April 2020

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