Gas Report Response: Stop exporting the lion’s share of gas, and avoid fracking risk to agriculture

Published: November 24, 2017

Farmers and regional communities have a clear response to the Offshore South East Australia Future Gas Supply Study: don’t frack our land and take our water for your gas exports.

The report, prepared by the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, is being used by the Federal Government to push onshore coal seam gas (CSG) and fracking gasfields and promote wasting precious taxpayer dollars on accelerating high-cost high-risk onshore gas development.

“Regional communities have been clear that they do not want to put our water supplies and thriving agricultural industries at risk with coal seam gas and fracking,” said Naomi Hogan of the Lock the Gate Alliance.  

 “The report admits that the Queensland gas exporting terminals have had the biggest impact on price dynamics and resulting in Australian gas being directed for export. It also makes it clear that unconventional gas is expensive.

 “Every day, the Queensland export terminals are sucking up double the amount of gas needed domestically on the East Coast, including our offshore gas from the south of Victoria. The export terminals are vacuuming up the low cost conventional gas from offshore fields, exporting Australia’s competitive advantage and making it harder for Australian gas users.

 “If we want to safeguard Australian industries and manufacturing we need to get real about transparency, restrict gas exports and accelerate cheap and reliable renewable energy.

 “The report contradicts the Government’s underhanded agenda to force unconventional gasfields onto the states and onto unwilling rural communities.

 “The analysis presented in the report makes it clear that we still have plenty of offshore gas available for the next 20 years and that on the east coast, proposed coal seam gas fields at Gunnedah and Queensland have the highest cost per gigajoule of production.

 “We can’t bring down the price of gas with high cost coal seam gas and fracking. The solution Australian businesses and households need is to stop exporting the lion’s share of our cheap conventional gas overseas.

 “Limiting gas exports from Gladstone would help bring prices down and ensure our gas resources last longer, without the need to sacrifice food growing regions for fracking gasfields.

 “Food growers’ contribution to Australia should not be put at risk for a Federal Government desperate to use any report as a way to promote their buddies in the fracking industry,” she said.

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