Offered under tender during 2009, by the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries, the geothermal exploration licenses G8TA_O, G8TA_R and G8TA_S, cover approximately 5,077sqkm of prospective ground in the Camden, Richmond and Ourimbah areas, all within the Sydney Basin.

The company plans to target exploration in these areas for Hot Sedimentary Aquifer (HSA) geothermal resources hosted by the Illawarra Coal Measures and the Shoalhaven Group.

The company said that such resources could deliver low carbon emission electrical power generation and industrial heating systems to serve Sydney’s expanding electrical and energy demands.

The proximity of the tenements to the population centres of Sydney, Campbelltown, Camden, Gosford and Wyong gives the company the opportunity to explore district heating and cooling opportunities powered by geothermal energy.

A three year technical work program will be initiated to test for the presence of a HSA geothermal aquifer system, its temperature, flow rates, connectivity and the potential for geothermal power generation.

The company added that the awarding of these areas under tender will help the growth of a strategic portfolio of east coast focused, ‘population/infrastructure advantaged’, geothermal projects in Australia.

Sharif Oussa, managing director of Planet Gas, said: “Planet Gas has developed a clear exploration strategy for these highly regarded Sydney Basin geothermal licence areas – we now look forward to putting that strategy into action, now that these licences have been granted.”