Chapter 4: Transport—Continued

Case Study—Offshore Oil and Gas Resources Sector Security Inquiry

Each year, Australia's oil and gas industries contribute 2.5 per cent to Australia's gross domestic product and generate $28billion in revenue. They yield almost $9billion in direct tax payments and provide 58 per cent of Australia's primary energy needs. Liquid natural gas projects, current or under consideration, involve investment of more than $200 billion and, with long-term contracts and 25 year production estimates, are significant for Australia's economic wellbeing.

The security and reliability of oil and gas production is becoming increasingly important, particularly the offshore facilities in Australia's Exclusive Economic Zone.

In May 2010, under the Inspector of Transport Security Act 2006, the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport directed the former Inspector of Transport Security, Mr Mick Palmer AOA PM, to inquire into the security of offshore oil and gas resources.

The inquiry looked at aspects that could have significant implications for security-regulated offshore facilities in general. In assessing the importance and relevance of these issues, the inquiry emphasised vulnerability and consequence rather than threat.

There were wide ranging Australian and international consultations with government and industry about security planning and preparedness, recruitment, training, government–industry interaction, command and control arrangements, response capacity and clarity, and relevant government or industry communication.

Cover of Offshore Oil and Gas Resources Sector Security Inquiry Report

Although Australia can be confident that security measures and practices generally reflect those in effect elsewhere, areas of vulnerability in current security-related practices and arrangements that warranted improvement were identified.

The inquiry report offered impartial, constructive advice to industry and government stakeholders on offshore oil and gas security measures, including 10 recommendations and 40 options that could help improve offshore oil and gas security in Australia.

The report was presented to the Minister on 7June2012 and the Minister tabled it in Parliament on 25 June 2012.

The report is available for download at:

Detailed report on performance

The following report is against the headings from the applicable output from the 2011–12 PBS.

a) Domestic engagement

The Department continued to participate in a range of whole-of-government national security activities. These included programs to enhance the national crisis and consequence management framework, national contingency planning, and contributing transport security advice to national security policy development.

It engaged extensively with industry and Australian intelligence and law enforcement agencies throughout the year, to maintain a contemporary understanding of the transport security threat and risk environment. Identification and mitigation of security vulnerabilities within the maritime and aviation transport sectors occurred through collection, investigation and analysis of transport security incidents and events.

The Department maintained strong relationships with industry and government stakeholders, including state and territory governments through well established regional networks and transport security consultative forums. For example, the Transport Security Committee (TSC) which sits under the Transport and Infrastructure Senior Officials' Committee met twice during the year. Through the TSC, the Department continued to progress surface transport security issues with state and territory government officials.

Close engagement with industry continued to be a priority in 2011–12 through activities such as attendance at industry-based security committees, in addition to formal regulatory management activities. The Regional Transport Security Training provided a valuable opportunity for the Department to maintain interaction with maritime and aviation stakeholders. The program delivered a series of one-day workshops and exercises covering the maritime, offshore oil and gas sectors and regional airports.

Engagement was ongoing with relevant Australian Government agencies and maritime and aviation industry stakeholders in response to:

  • the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Law Enforcement's Inquiry into the Adequacy of Aviation and Maritime Security Measures to Combat Serious and Organised Crime, and
  • the ANAO Audit of the Management of the ASIC and MSIC schemes.

The Department designated 178 security controlled airports a category according to their risk profiles in line with the new airport category model. Categories for all security controlled airports were made available on the Department's website in January 2012.

The Department continued to consult with regional communities to support implementation and delivery of passenger and checked baggage screening at their airports. New screening operations at the 21 regional airports that fall within the maximum takeoff weight requirements were to start on 1 July 2012.

The Department engaged in key initiatives to facilitate passenger ship security. Industry security outcomes were enhanced by:

  • a total of 3,071 compliance activities, including 349 audits of aviation, maritime and registered air cargo industry participants
  • compliance activities which identified 612 issues of non-compliance. Industry participants responded in a timely and appropriate manner to most non-compliance notices
  • 19 investigations of alleged breaches of Australia's transport security legislation. These resulted in three infringement notices and two formal caution notices. All notices were for ASIC or MSIC offences committed by individuals, and
  • one enforcement order and two compliance control directions were issued to industry participants under the Aviation Transport Security Act 2004, to ensure that emerging compliance concerns were effectively controlled.

The Department received 119 requests for discretionary ASICs under Regulation 6.29 of the Aviation Transport Security Regulations. Of applications finalised during 2011–12, two were refused and all others received a 12-month conditional or 24-month ASIC.

The Department received 300 requests for discretionary MSICs under Regulation 6.08F of the Maritime Transport and Offshore Facilities Security Regulations. Of applications finalised in 2011–12, four were refused and all others received a 12-month conditional or 24-month MSIC.

Between October 2011 and March 2012 the Department trialled targeted enforcement activity focused on proper display of aviation and maritime security identification cards at locations around the country. During the trial 4,090 persons were checked, 336 were cautioned orally and 37 written cautions were issued for non-compliance with transport security legislation.

b) International engagement

As part of the Department's commitment to strengthening international transport security and engagement with overseas counterparts, the Department has posts established at Australian embassies in Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, the United Arab Emirates and the United States of America. The Department continued its support of AusAID programs in Papua New Guinea and Indonesia.

During 2011–12, the Department:

  • continued international engagement through building bilateral relationships with counterpart agencies
  • delivered aviation and maritime capacity-building activities in Indonesia, Thailand, the Philippines, Timor Leste, Vietnam and the Pacific
  • conducted last-ports-of-call assessments and capacity building, and
  • strengthened regional engagement on transport security and infrastructure by supporting multilateral forums, such as Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), International Maritime Organization (IMO), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community.

The Department continued to support the Australian Government's APEC agenda including through the APEC Transportation Ministerial Meeting in September 2011. The Department helped advance the APEC supply chain connectivity framework, improve intermodal connections and encourage greater use of alternative transport fuels whilst working on harmonising vehicle standards and enhancing intermodal freight strategies.

The Department continued its program of aviation security assessments of international airports with direct flights to Australia. These assessments are informing the Department's international engagement, capacity building and policy development. Assessments in 2011–12 included an enhanced air cargo security component in line with international changes.

Twenty last-port-of-call aviation security assessments were conducted, including seven by the Pacific Aviation Security Liaison Officer. These included airport and airline security operations based on Annex 17 to the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation. Airports were selected for assessment using a risk assessment methodology.

Continued international engagement supported moves to strengthen air cargo security arrangements. The Department was represented in forums facilitated by the ICAO and influenced the direction of emerging global standards for aviation and air cargo security. The Department worked bilaterally and multilaterally with international transport security regulators and industry to promote a collaborative strategy to strengthen global standards. In March 2012, the Department continued its efforts in leading the Australian delegation at the 23rd Avsec Panel Meeting of ICAO. The meeting was significant in reaching agreement on a number of long standing issues.

The Department contributed to the Australian delegation attending the 90th International Maritime Organization Maritime Safety Committee Meeting in London in May 2012. Successful international engagement occurred through the QUAD Maritime Security Experts Working Group and the International Maritime Organization Bilateral to ensure support for enhanced Port State Control security measures.

International engagement with the US, Canada and Singapore informed an international benchmark of identity security schemes for the maritime and aviation industries. This work will inform policy analysis and is scheduled for completion in 2012–13.

Case Study—Strengthening Aviation Security Initiative

In February 2010, the Australian Government announced measures to strengthen Australia's international and domestic aviation security against emerging threats. Over four years, the Strengthening Aviation Security Initiative will see $180 million invested in new and improved security technologies, increased policing at airports, enhanced security procedures, and strengthened international cooperation.

This includes new screening technologies, additional explosive trace detection machines, and introducing security screening at more regional airports as announced in the Australian Government's National Aviation Policy Statement in December 2009. This required a coordinated effort to manage new policy settings, introduce legislation and regulatory mechanisms, and pay grants totalling more than $23 million in 2011–12 to assist airports to acquire screening equipment.

Introducing multi-view x-ray machines and bottled liquid scanners capable of detecting liquid explosives at transit points at Australia's eight international gateway airports was the first step towards lifting liquids, aerosols and gels restrictions for international travel. In a world first, from 1 July 2012, passengers transiting through these airports are able to have duty-free items greater than 100ml screened by this new technology. Previously, passengers would have had to surrender these items. This partial lifting of restrictions followed successful trials at Sydney and Melbourne airports in late 2010 in cooperation with the United Kingdom and United States of America.

Image of Aviation Security at Airport

A trial of body scanners at Sydney and Melbourne International Airports in August and September 2011 involved over 23,000 scans. Extensive consultation with the public and government agencies ensured that privacy and health concerns were addressed. The Department released a privacy impact assessment about these concerns after consulting privacy and civil interest groups, facilitated by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner. This work will support introduction of the technology at Australia's eight international gateway airports in 2012–13.

From 1 July 2012, an additional 21 regional airports servicing larger aircraft with maximum take off weights greater than 20,000kg, will begin screening passengers and their baggage. The Department's development of a flexible airport classification system in legislation means screening requirements are appropriate to the circumstances of each of these airports.

c) Transport security inquiries

On 31 May 2010, the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport directed the Inspector of Transport Security to conduct an inquiry to assess the quality and effectiveness of security arrangements and response capabilities of resource operators and government to a security incident or an attack on offshore oil and gas exploration production infrastructure.

As part of the inquiry, the Inspector of Transport Security and inquiry team consulted widely with Australian and international government and industry representatives to review security planning and preparedness, recruitment, training, government and industry interaction, command and control arrangements, response capacity and clarity, and industry and government communication and information-sharing arrangements relevant to the oil and gas resources sector.

Domestic consultations were held in Western Australia, the Northern Territory, the Joint Petroleum Development Area in the Timor Sea, Queensland and Victoria. Offshore site assessments were undertaken on facilities off the North West Shelf and off the coast of Karratha in Western Australia, in the Joint Petroleum Development Area, and Bass Strait, Victoria.

International consultations were held in the United States of America, France, Norway, United Kingdom, Indonesia and the Philippines, and site visits organised by the United States Coast Guard were on facilities in the Gulf of Mexico.

A total of 31 offshore and onshore site visits and more than 50 consultations were undertaken in Australia and eight offshore and onshore site visits and some 45 consultations were undertaken internationally.

Separate industry and government workshops were held in March 2012 to check the prima facie findings of the inquiry and possible options for consideration with government and industry representatives.

The Inspector of Transport Security presented the report of the inquiry to the Minister for Infrastructure and Transport on 7 June 2012 and it was tabled in Parliament on 25 June 2012.

The report is available for download at

Program 2.2—Surface Transport


In 2011–12, $93.2 million in assistance was delivered under the Tasmanian Freight Equalisation Scheme and $34.6 million under the Bass Strait Passenger Vehicle Equalisation Scheme (BSPVES). From 1 July 2011, the rebates payable under the BSPVES were increased according to the Consumer Price Index.

On 19 June 2012, the Navigation Bill 2012 and the Marine Safety (Domestic Commercial Vessel) National Law Bill 2012 (National Law) and associated consequential amendment bills were passed by the House of Representatives. These Bills are elements of the most comprehensive suite of maritime reforms in Australia's history. The Bills are scheduled for Senate debate in the Spring sittings 2012, with commencement planned for January 2013.

Following the Senate debate in Spring this year, the Navigation Bill 2012 received Royal Assent on 13 September 2012 and is now known as the Navigation Act 2012.


Program 2.2 was delivered through the work of the Surface Transport Policy Division, with input from the Policy and Research Division. The activities of Program 2.2 sought to improve the performance of the surface transport industry for the benefit of all Australians.

Did you know?

Container vessels made 3,700 calls to the five major Australian ports in 2010–11.

Source: Waterline 50.

Summary of performance

Tables 4.4 and 4.5 summarise the Department's results in delivering Program 2.2 against the key performance indicators and deliverables and their targets, published in the 2011–12 PBS.

Table 4.4 Summary of performance—Program 2.2 key performance indicators

Key performance indicator Target Result
Targeted transport regulatory reform initiatives are developed and progressed through COAG to enable single national systems of regulation, maritime safety legislation and rail safety regulation and investigation. The COAG national reform agenda is actively progressed in conjunction with all state and territory governments. 11–12 Substantially Achieved 10–11 Achieved 09–10 Achieved
The COAG national reform agenda was actively progressed in collaboration with all state and territory governments. Intergovernmental agreements were signed covering heavy vehicles, rail safety, maritime safety and national laws were agreed for each reform. The Rail Safety National Law (South Australia) Act 2012 passed the South Australian Parliament in May 2012.
Ensure the competitiveness and sustainability of Australian coastal shipping. Implementation of Australian Government commitments on shipping industry reform. The Australian Government's commitment to shipping industry reform was fulfilled with enactment of legislation to give effect to the Government's Stronger Shipping for a Stronger Economy initiative. The reforms began on 1 July 2012.
Policy advice is influential in COAG consideration to improve the environmental performance of the Australian new vehicle fleet. Consideration by the Australian Government of CO2 emission standards and by COAG of vehicle fuel efficiency measures designed to move Australia towards international best practice is actively progressed. The Department progressed mandatory CO2 emissions standards for light vehicles, consistent with the Australian Government's election commitment.
Results Key
Achieved All targets for 2011–12 were met or exceeded.
Substantially achieved Targets were mostly met, and any issues are being managed.
Partially achieved Some targets were met, and any issues are being managed.
Not achieved None or minimal progress was made against targets in 2011–12.

Table 4.5 Summary of performance—Program 2.2 deliverables

Deliverable Target Result
ATC and COAG decisions on developing and implementing national approaches to heavy vehicle regulation, maritime safety and rail safety regulation and investigation are progressed. Initiatives accurately reflect the views of jurisdictions and COAG decisions, and facilitate decision making by ATC Ministers. National approaches to heavy vehicle regulation, maritime safety and rail safety regulation and investigation were progressed in line with the Standing Council on Transport and Infrastructure (SCOTI) (formerly the Australian Transport Council) and COAG decisions and timeframes.
Provision of policy input to the Road Reform Plan Feasibility Study into more direct heavy vehicle charging. Advice prepared for ATC and delivery of the Feasibility Study to COAG in accordance with the agreed timeframe. Work on a Regulation Impact Statement should COAG agree to proceed. The Department provided policy input to the COAG Road Reform Plan (CRRP) Feasibility Study which SCOTI submitted to COAG in December 2011. Work has progressed on measures in preparation for the next phase of CRRP should COAG decide to proceed.
Maintain the Green Vehicle Guide (GVG) website as the principal place for information on the environmental performance of new light vehicles in the Australian market place. Increased web hits and citation of GVG ratings in elements of the media. In 2011–12, the monthly web usage rates were slightly below the average for 2010–11. The GVG continues to be the primary environmental information source for media in new model reviews and broader articles discussing the environmental performance of new vehicles.
Implement the Commonwealth's commitment to CO2 emission standards for light vehicles from 2015, and implement additional COAG agreed measures on vehicle fuel efficiency and low emission vehicles in consultation with the states, territories and key stakeholders. Develop and implement agreed mandatory CO2 standards and COAG actions within agreed timeframes. Development of standards progressed with the release of a discussion paper on CO2 emissions standards in September 2011 and engagement of an expert consultant for independent CO2 and technology analysis to support a Regulation Impact Statement. Work continued on a code of practice for fuel consumption and CO2 information in advertising.
Government endorsed actions in response to the Review of Disability Standards for Accessible Public Transport are implemented. Implement agreed Australian Government actions in consultation with key stakeholders. Meet Government timeframes and guidelines. Progress on the implementation is ongoing. Key stakeholders were engaged in discussions on all recommendations.
Contribute to the development and implementation of international shipping conventions to protect the environment and ensure maritime safety. Ongoing international and domestic stakeholder engagement.

Development and implementation of legislation and regulations in line with agreed government policy and international conventions.
The Department engaged with key stakeholders and took part in several meetings at the IMO as well as domestic meetings about marine environment protection. Legislation was developed for amendments to several annexes to the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships.

The Navigation Bill 2012 was introduced in Parliament in May 2012. This will assure Australia's continued compliance with obligations under international conventions on maritime safety and environment protection by providing a contemporary legislative framework. The re-write of the Navigation Act 1912 was a major reform initiative of the portfolio in 2011–12 and will lead to a modern maritime regulating system to protect Australia's maritime industry.
Efficient and effective management of administered items. Items are administered in accordance with relevant legislation, published guidelines and ANAO guidance. Items were administered in accordance with relevant legislation, published guidelines and ANAO guidance.

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Last Updated: 17 November, 2014