|Institution:||University of Tasmania|
|Full text PDF:||http://eprints.utas.edu.au/18839/1/whole_CaneReginaldFrank1940_thesis.pdf|
Petroleum, both as a source of fuel and as a means of locomotion, has become one of the chief commodities vitally necessary to our civilisation. Australia is particularly unfavoured by nature, in that she is totally dependent upon outside sources for her supply of it, and, therefore, it is apparent that, living as we do in the fear of international strife, the need for research into this all-important element of our nation is very great. In a time of warfare, we would be wholly dependent upon the Imported supply, which, in the year 1936-37 amounted to 282 million gallons of petroleum spirit valued at £4,525,939. It can be seen that the need for adequate internal resources of fuel is a very pressing question. As it appears that well-petroleum does not occur to any great extent in Australia, we should turn to the nearest substitute, i.e. the oil obtained during the distillation of oil-shale. The "Shale Bounty Act" was passed in 1917 in order to stimulate the production of this oil, and allows payment up to £67,500 per year based on a gallon production. Shales occur in several regions in Australia, the chief of which are around the Newnes district in New South Wales and also in isolated patches in Queensland and Western Australia.