The debate at the Australian Domestic Gas Outlook Conference today demonstrates the failure to get gas exports under control and protect Australian businesses and farmers, according to Lock the Gate.
Lock the Gate has called for the Federal Government to trigger the Australian Domestic Gas Security Mechanism after ACCC Chairman Rod Sims said today that gas prices are going back up due to gas giants treating the domestic market with 'contempt.'
“Rod Sims from the ACCC has basically admitted today that Australian businesses are being deliberately ripped off by gas companies, who export most of their gas offshore creating a shortage here.
“Gas exporting companies are sucking up the lion’s share of Australian gas and driving up prices here to match export prices.
“The Federal Government wimped out on taking action to protect Aussie consumers last year, refusing to trigger the Australian Domestic Gas Security Mechanism which would have allowed them to put a limit on exports.
“Instead of capping exports, which is the only thing that will address the price hike from gas companies, the Federal Government is trying to force more fracking on an unwilling population.
“Aussies are not stupid. We know that gas drilling has tripled along the eastern seaboard over the last five years while at the same time gas prices have gone through the roof.
“More unconventional gas will only make things worse - locking in high cost, low yield gas and putting water resources in jeopardy. Farmers and regional communities will never accept that.
“Instead of trying to force polluting gasfields on farmers, the Government should be helping businesses innovate to get off expensive gas in order to save money and create new jobs.
“We can meet our energy needs without sacrificing agriculture by getting gas exports under control and by developing renewable energy with storage.
“Lower cost renewable energy and solar heat is a serious option for manufacturers and households who can take steps to get off expensive and polluting gas.”