SEA Gas : Bringing Energy to the Community

Joshua MannLauren Kania
Joshua Mann - Regional Director Lauren Kania - Junior Editor
Highlights
  • SEA Gas plays a critical role in Australia's oil and gas sector, transporting large volumes of natural gas to major delivery points for power generation as well as servicing industrial users.
  • “We will be a critical component of the energy transition, transporting gas to be used for firming renewable energy well into the future,” says Eric Bardy, CEO, SEA Gas.
  • The company’s pipeline system ensures the safe, reliable transportation of high-pressure gas, which serves approximately 50 percent of Adelaide’s natural gas needs.

Proudly celebrating 20 years of helping to keep South Australia’s lights on, Eric Bardy, CEO of SEA Gas, tells us about the company’s history of transporting natural gas and its innovative plans for the future.

BRINGING ENERGY TO THE COMMUNITY

Having recently marked its 20th anniversary of operations and exceptional service, SEA Gas is proud to have built an infrastructure that has come to form a critical component of South Australia and Victoria’s energy security. 

Helping to keep the lights on and more since 2004, the company boasts an impressive history of innovation, teamwork, and industry leadership. 

Established in 2002 to develop, own, and operate the 700 kilometre (km) underground, high-pressure natural gas pipeline transmission system from Port Campbell in Victoria, connecting the Otway and Bass Basins to Adelaide in South Australia, the company plays a critical role in the country’s oil and gas sector. 

“SEA Gas was conceived to deal with a surplus of gas from Western Victoria and provide an alternative supply to Adelaide’s gas-fired power generators and distribution network,” introduces Eric Bardy, CEO. 

Transporting large volumes of natural gas to major delivery points, primarily for power generation but also servicing industrial users, the company operates from its head office in Adelaide with a team of 50 staff who work diligently to manage, operate, and maintain its infrastructure. 

SEA Gas is co-owned by APA Group, an Australian Securities Exchange (ASX) Top 50 company, and Retail Employees Superannuation Trust (Rest), an industry superannuation fund, enabling a multitude of benefits for the business to draw upon for its operations. 

“The owners of the two companies provide a depth of expertise in the strategic management of both infrastructure and investment,” divulges Bardy. 

As a direct result of this collaborative effort and dedication to continual improvement, SEA Gas is able to work towards its vision of being the best infrastructure company linking Australia.

20 YEARS OF QUALITY SERVICE

Recently appointed CEO in October 2023, Bardy brings to the role more than 30 years of experience across all elements of the oil and gas industry, having successfully led teams of different sizes and compositions in a variety of settings. 

Having acquired valuable knowledge in operational and management roles at SA Power Networks, Santos Ltd, and ExxonMobil, he spent the last seven years as Head of Operations at SEA Gas and comes with a deep understanding of the transmission pipeline business, intent on confidently leading the enterprise into the future. 

“We provide gas haulage and storage services for our transmission pipeline system, specifically receiving gas from producers in Western Victoria and delivering it to a range of power stations, industrial users, and distribution networks,” summarises Bardy. 

The primary function of the company’s pipeline system is to ensure the safe, reliable transportation of high-pressure gas, which subsequently serves approximately 50 percent of Adelaide’s natural gas needs. 

SEA Gas operates three different pipelines across Southern Australia, including the Port Campbell to Adelaide (PCA) pipeline, the Port Campbell to Iona (PCI) pipeline, and the Mortlake pipeline. 

PCA is the main pipeline within the company’s extensive system, stretching approximately 680km across the country and consisting of two compressor stations located at Coomandook and Miakite. 

This system incorporates a number of laterals owned and operated by SEA Gas, together with associated facilities such as connection point infrastructure and all the equipment required to operate the crucial pipeline system. 

Additionally, the company provides pipeline services with market-reflective pricing to deliver the natural gas from multiple source points to the required destination, alongside offering capacity trading and day-ahead auction services for the PCA and PCI pipelines.

HELPING KEEP THE LIGHTS ON

Currently, SEA Gas is working towards converting its pipeline to a bi-directional flow – a significant operation that will progress the company’s capabilities towards an innovative future. 

“This project is key to delivering energy security to both South Australia and Victoria,” enthuses Bardy. 

“Sourcing gas either from Northern Australia via the Moomba to Adelaide Pipeline System (MAPS) or through a liquefied natural gas (LNG) import terminal, gas will flow through our pipeline into Victoria and be stored for peak day use in South Australia. 

“We will be a critical component of the energy transition, transporting gas to be used for firming renewable energy well into the future.” 

This project will expand the company’s 20-year history of dedication and hard work to continually provide energy and keep the lights on for communities across the nation.  

Equally important to both SEA Gas’ past and present is its relationship with supply partners. 

“As a small organisation, our supply partners for both materials and services are key to our success. We don’t always have specific expertise in-house, so we rely on our service partners to provide their skills and knowledge to ensure we maintain operations to the highest standards,” explains Bardy. 

These long-term relationships extend to its valued members of staff who keep the company operating smoothly on a daily basis.   

“We have a highly dedicated workforce that cares about ensuring we get it right every day, and with such an intimate team, everyone is given the opportunity to make an impact on the business,” expands Bardy. 

Despite SEA Gas’ relatively small staff size, it has a big focus on diversity and inclusion, believing that promoting an equitable workspace engenders a strong culture and promotes positive business outcomes. 

“We will be a critical component of the energy transition, transporting gas to be used for firming renewable energy well into the future”

Eric Bardy, CEO, SEA Gas

GASSED FOR THE FUTURE

SEA Gas has been able to differentiate itself from the competition in a number of ways throughout the years. 

“We are unique because we are small, independent, and have always been privately owned,” states Bardy. 

Along with the close-knit nature that the company has embedded into its DNA, SEA Gas proudly incorporates an eco-friendly approach into all of its pipeline services by monitoring its asset footprint through a stringent, regulator-approved sustainability management plan. 

“We have recently adopted a net zero aspiration for 2050, and are actively working on reducing emissions to meet our interim 2030 targets,” expands Bardy. 

SEA Gas aspires to lead the standards for public, employee, and contractor safety, while valuing sustainability in its approach to environmental management. 

This desire for a better future extends to the company’s involvement with a variety of corporate social responsibility (CSR) practices, including supporting organisations such as the Adelaide Mechanical Engineering Student Society (AMESS), the University of Adelaide Chemical Engineering Society (Chems Adelaide), the Warrnambool and Murry Bridge Agricultural Shows, the Salvation Army Christmas Appeal, and Men’s Sheds. 

“We also sponsor different enterprises through our SEA Change programme, helping local communities, educational institutions, and the arts,” prides Bardy. 

To encourage the next generation of engineers and ensure the successful future of the oil and gas industry, the company also runs an annual summer internship programme for local engineering students, exposing them to a wide range of activities and experiences. 

As SEA Gas looks towards the future of an ever-evolving industry, it ultimately seeks to continue to be an asset for the Australian energy sector by helping to keep the lights on throughout the communities in which it operates. 

“Over the last five years, the energy industry has moved from a steady and nearly invisible part of the community to constantly being in the media,” concludes Bardy. 

SEA Gas is ready to face whatever challenges there may be and pave the way for an innovative, sustainable, and reliable future.

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By Lauren Kania Junior Editor
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Lauren Kania is an in-house writer for APAC Outlook Magazine, where she is responsible for interviewing corporate executives and crafting original features for the magazine, corporate brochures, and the digital platform.