Grants to Fracking companies

A Federal Senate Inquiry has uncovered shocking evidence of the potential serious mishandling of public money for fracking. The Federal Government wants to give away $50 million in grants to fracking companies in the NT. 

We’ve learned that Traditional Owners’ voices and concerns have been continuously sidelined, all while Liberal Party donors are set to receive millions of dollars to frack the NT.

As Traditional Owner Johnny Wilson said to the Senate Inquiry: “If I had my way I'd say take it and shove it. My country is worth more than $50 million. My country is life. Please give us a fair go. Please, we are begging with our grieving hearts.”

“Just like the other Traditional Owners on Country, we are struggling to even get the basic maintenance for our land, for our community, and yet the government is willing to pour so much money into destroying our country.”

If you can think of a better way to spend $50 million in the NT, then we need you to take action. 

Australian Senators have an important decision to make in the coming days. They have the power to disallow, to stop, the fracking grants going from the Federal Government to fracking companies. 

Can you contact Federal Senators across the country who can stop these terrible fracking grants? Please leave a message with their office or send them an email and let them know: 

  • Senator Malarndirri McCarthy and the Senate Committee have shown leadership in investigating the dodgy NT fracking grants and hearing from impacted Traditional Owners.
  • The inquiry found many Traditional Owners have not been consulted and do not consent to fracking on their Country.
  • The money could be so much better spent! Hospitals and schools in the Northern Territory are desperate for upgrades, private fracking companies don’t need our money.
  • Fracking company Empire Energy is set to get a whopping $21 million in public funds…  and their board and shareholders include major Liberal party donors.
  • Empire Energy had undisclosed meetings with the Government, all before the fracking grants were announced.
  • Please do the right thing for Australian taxpayers and all Territorians and disallow the Beetaloo fracking grants.

Senator Contact Numbers and email– Labor and Crossbench (click to view)


You can also send the Senators an email. Here are some draft ideas: 

Dear Senator ___________ 

My name is _____ and I live in  _____.

I have been following the Senate inquiry into Oil and gas exploration and production in the Beetaloo Basin and the Beetaloo Cooperative Drilling Program Instrument 2021, which provides public money for oil and gas corporations.

I firstly want to praise Labor Senator Malarndirri McCarthy and the Senate Committee members for their role in this inquiry and bringing critical information and Traditional Owners voices into the spotlight. 

During last week’s hearings the senate inquiry has heard that the gas companies seeking to frack the Beetaloo Basin have links to tax secrecy jurisdictions, the Liberal party and Russian plutocrats.

The inquiry also heard repeatedly that Traditional Owners in the Beetaloo Basin region do not want this money to be given to gas companies and that many have not given free prior and informed consent to fracking on their lands.

Traditional Owner Johnny Wilson said it was “very disturbing” that the government was handing so much money to oil and gas companies while local communities struggled to obtain even basic infrastructure.

“I still live in a tin shack. My floor is bare ground,” he said. “Just like the other Traditional Owners on Country, we are struggling to even get the basic maintenance for our land, for our community, and yet the government is willing to pour so much money into destroying our country.”

Earlier this month, the first three grants from the $50 million dollar program were given to a subsidiary of Empire Energy, a company chaired by major Liberal donor Paul Espie. 

Empire Energy was given the grants, worth $21m, to drill at three sites in the Beetaloo, despite still waiting on the necessary environmental approvals from the Northern Territory government.

Other companies which may be eligible for the grants include Falcon Oil and Gas and Sweetpea petroleum, both of which are linked to known tax secrecy havens.

The money could be so much better spent. Hospitals and schools in the Northern Territory are desperate for upgrades. Private fracking companies don’t need our money.

I feel that ample evidence has been provided throughout this inquiry that this $50 million dollar federal grant program is not in the public interest and is simply a matter of the Liberal party throwing their donors another bone.

With this evidence in mind, I urge you as an Australian Senator to use your power to vote for the disallowance of this fracking instrument and to vote against these subsidies. 

Kind regards, 

_____________________________________________

Authorised by Naomi Hogan, Lock the Gate Alliance, Newcastle

  • Denelle Kennedy
    commented 2021-09-03 22:43:42 +1000
    No fracking!!!
  • Steve Harris
    commented 2021-08-25 13:22:21 +1000
    No fracking thanks waters to valuable
  • Terry Banks
    commented 2021-08-19 11:23:39 +1000
    We dont need anymore gas from anywhere, the future is renewable energy only.
  • M Cooper
    commented 2021-08-18 10:09:44 +1000
    I emailed them all! A lot of copying and pasting email addresses into bcc and then the email body into contact forms, would be better to make it easier, hopefully others will be bothered to do this too…and hopefully it’s not all in vain.
  • terry shanahan
    commented 2021-08-17 09:24:30 +1000
    Love your work. I’m on to it.
  • Chelle Destefano
    commented 2021-08-16 23:37:08 +1000
    Make this easier and more automated in sending to the state ministers instead of popping up the names on the state we click on and giving now other way of contacting them, only making us copy and paste their email addresses into a notepad app which is time consuming! Do it the way Get Up does, easily in a form, we fill out our location and then write the email or send the pre-written emails. This would be a lot easier! If you want our support, make it easier for us.
  • Jennifer Burger-Medway
    commented 2021-08-16 12:54:50 +1000
  • robin gardner
    commented 2021-08-15 22:51:50 +1000
    sent emails to three senators in Victoria
  • Sandra Mills
    commented 2021-08-15 20:41:14 +1000
  • Therese Lee
    commented 2021-08-15 15:52:50 +1000
    I was not able to add my name or any other details to this letter. I tried. Maybe you need to include instructions on the technical side of making changes to the letter to add name, address etc.
  • Beverley Alderton
    commented 2021-08-14 08:01:45 +1000
  • Elisabeth Dark
    commented 2021-08-13 18:25:19 +1000
    I have sent emails to Senators McAlister, O’Neill & Sheldon…shorter versions of your suggested text.
  • MeeWun Lee
    commented 2021-08-13 15:23:07 +1000
    Fracking is bad on every front. We need renewables straight away. Our future and that of our children and grandchildens’ are at stake. Wake up politicians and mining companies.
  • Eddie Booth
    commented 2021-08-13 13:35:09 +1000
    I have seen ample evidence that Fracking is harmful, PLEASE STOP IT.
  • Cheryl Kneipp
    commented 2021-08-13 13:30:35 +1000
    I have been personally contacting politicians for years, what I have learnt is the LNP and my particular M.P may send an occasional reply but ignores my concerns, apparently conveniently deaf to the concerns of Australians.

    Take the number of referendums in Australia which proves political parties do not think like Australian citizens, they out of touch with reality.

    We cannot continue to vote the same way it just doesn’t work to our advantage, first step good people in the Senate Independents who work for citizens not a political party with vested interests.

    Why do we insist on paying good money to Senators who haven’t a clue, especially as in private enterprise we wouldn’t last the 3month trial if we acted in the same manner, it appears some in Parliament go into politics because it’s the only place without standards moral, ethical, or honesty.

    We desperately need a Federal ICAC with teeth not Scott Morrison’s watered down version the misuse of taxpayers is alarming it is not their money to spend as they wish again if they tried the same stunt in private enterprise legal action would be taken.
  • Michael Farnell
    commented 2021-08-13 11:44:24 +1000
  • ron sandle
    commented 2021-08-13 09:28:17 +1000
  • ron sandle
    commented 2021-08-13 09:28:17 +1000
  • Dane Wilmott
    commented 2021-08-13 09:19:19 +1000
    Stop fracking now
  • Michael Chanas
    commented 2021-08-13 07:48:05 +1000
  • Kent Robinson
    commented 2021-08-13 07:17:11 +1000
    If the aquifer is damaged and ground water poisoned in these foolhardy proceedings, then Australia is in serious trouble, There is no going back!

    Renewables are are the only option!
  • Sunilkumar Dave
    commented 2021-08-13 06:52:47 +1000
  • James Mulcare
    commented 2021-08-13 04:48:14 +1000
  • Deanne O'Donnell
    commented 2021-08-13 01:28:18 +1000
  • Bill Kavanagh
    commented 2021-08-13 00:51:13 +1000
  • Judith Hazelton
    commented 2021-08-13 00:05:48 +1000
    Fracking destroys water tables, land & life for the long-term. The damage done far exceeds any short term gain.
  • Steve Harris
    commented 2021-08-12 23:51:25 +1000
    Fracking destroys ancient springs and aquifers also releasing fugitive gas aswell as salt into the surrounding country
  • Umberto Ferraro
    commented 2021-08-12 22:15:46 +1000
    Please stop the fracking !!!! And the possible danger that comes with it,,
  • Caroline Graham
    commented 2021-08-12 21:48:33 +1000
    Sick to death of the lack of responsible leadership in my country, but we get the leaders we deserve don’t we ? Why are we the worst in the world ?
  • Elisabeth Wallace
    commented 2021-08-12 21:45:04 +1000
    A sustainable future of clean energy will enable all of humanity to have a life that is not impacted significantly by the ravages of climate change. I say significantly, because I think that the damage already caused to our environment has been enough to cause change that will be long lasting. How we deal with long lasting climate change is up for debate as well as how can we survive as we have done comfortably in the past. This a huge question mark. Fracking and the exploitation of fossil fuels will not assist our survival and will continue to be to our detriment. I quite like the idea of a future for myself, my children, my grandchildren and there children. Am I being optimistic?

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Content on this site is authorised by Georgina Woods for Lock the Gate Alliance, Lismore NSW.

We respect and honour Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Elders past and present. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of First Nations peoples and their ongoing fight to protect Country.