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Road to nowhere: Federal Government’s NT gas roads announcement a massive waste of taxpayer funds

Australian taxpayers should be outraged the Morrison Government has announced it will yet again subsidise the polluting and expensive fracking industry using public funds with a “gas roads” package for the NT worth $217M.

The announcement, made today by Deputy Prime Minister Michael McCormack and Resources Minister Keith Pitt, as well as Labor Territory Environment Minister Eva Lawler, is the latest in a long list of subsidies being used to prop up the destructive fossil fuel industry by Territory and Federal governments.

No one is asking for this - it’s little more than a waste of Australian taxpayer money to meet the demands of politicians within the government who are ideologically wedded to fossil fuels,” said Protect Country Alliance spokesperson Dan Robins.

“It’s little surprise that this announcement was made by two National Party MPs, while Scott Morrison is on vacation.

“If the gas industry is so profitable why do they need millions in handouts from us taxpayers? 

“It’s as if all the environmental risks are pushed on the public while these private companies take all the profits and unwarranted government subsidies.

“The NT and Federal Governments have already wasted hundreds of millions of dollars trying to get the fracking industry going in the NT, but even the companies who are exploring here are yet to confirm whether there is a viable resource.

“Gas that would be produced in the Beetaloo would be extremely expensive, so wouldn’t stand a chance of being exploited without the government throwing taxpayer money at it.

“Clearly, the Federal and Territory Governments are doing all they can to prop up a polluting, destructive industry that Territorians neither want, nor need.

“This announcement shows complete disdain for the majority of Territory Traditional Owners, communities, and farmers who strongly oppose fracking in the Beetaloo Basin.

“Mr McCormack also clearly dodged questions today about how the Beetaloo’s projected carbon bomb could be offset - the government's own estimates show this could total 117 million tonnes per annum. This will have a devastating impact on the NT’s environment, which is already suffering due to climate change and will hasten the world towards the worst case global heating scenario.”

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