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Byron Shire
June 18, 2024

Local Labor MP supports Future Gas Strategy

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Re-elected local federal Labor MP, Justine Elliot. Photo Tree Faerie

Climate research scientist, Joelle Gergis, has joined other scientists, academics, think tanks and economists in condemning federal Labor’s Future Gas Strategy, which was released last week. 

The Business Council of Australia has welcomed the government’s strategy, which places gas as an important energy fuel ‘through to 2050 and beyond’.

Yet critics say that Labor, like the coalition, are captured by the fossil fuel sector, which is mainly foreign-owned, pays little to no tax, and enjoys generous government handouts.

In the same week, the European Union’s climate change monitoring service, Copernicus, reported that April was the hottest April on record globally, extending an 11-month streak where every month had set a temperature record.

The Guardian reported on May 8, ‘Many of the scientists envisage a “semi-dystopian” future, with famines, conflicts and mass migration, driven by heatwaves, wildfires, floods and storms of an intensity and frequency far beyond those that have already struck’.

Local federal Labor MP, Justine Elliot, was asked, ‘Are you concerned that Labor, like the coalition, is captured by large fossil fuel corporations, given the climate science advice is at odds with the Future Gas Strategy?’ 

No reservation policy

‘And, are you concerned that a Domestic Gas Reservation Policy wasn’t included in this strategy, given it would ensure cheaper prices for residents?’

She instead replied, ‘After ten years of neglect by the Liberals and Nationals, the Albanese government is now investing billions to roll out the renewable energy projects that are creating a clean energy future. Until renewables are at sufficient scale, we will need a mix of reliable and affordable energy sources to power our homes and our industries’.

‘We have released our gas strategy to establish the role gas will play in the transition to net zero by 2050, securing affordable gas for Australia as we move to a more renewable grid.

‘To meet our climate targets, we need more renewables – and for the moment we need gas to get us there. The emissions from gas are being managed and reduced, primarily through the Safeguard Mechanism.

‘The Future Gas Strategy does not invest in gas supply or projects. Overwhelmingly, our focus is on adding new renewable energy to the grid. Gas is playing a role as our economy transitions, but the sooner Australia gets to 100 per cent renewable energy, the better’.

Mrs Elliot added in contrast the Liberals and Nationals ‘don’t believe in climate change’, and ‘their only solution now is to build nuclear reactors all over the country’.

Betrayal of future generations

Ms Gergis told The Echo Labor’s policy was a ‘betrayal of future generations’.

Ms Gergis said, ‘Labor’s gas policy is completely inconsistent with what the science says we need to do to stabilise the Earth’s climate. Methane is a very powerful greenhouse gas, that will lock in dangerous levels of global warming for decades to come’. 

Carbon capture? 

‘We cannot rely on non-existent carbon capture and storage and short-term carbon offset projects to soak up emissions from the continued burning of fossil fuels. We need to stop making the very serious problems we are already facing even worse.

‘Continuing to invest in fossil fuels diverts investment away from renewable energy technology, which is now the cheapest and cleanest form of energy. 

‘This policy is a regressive, cowardly move from Labor that tells voters they are not serious about addressing climate change at the pace and scale required by the science. Expanding fossil production during a climate emergency is unforgivable betrayal of future generations.

Ms Gergis’s Quarterly Essay, titled ‘Highway to hell: Climate Change and Australia’s Future’, will be released on June 3.


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18 COMMENTS

  1. The Justine with background noise, again.

    The LabLibNat Fossil Fuel Cartel is a reckless and dangerous beast that needs slaying if we want to stop the climate catastrophies being visited upon us. The incessant boosting of fossil fuel usage is what you end up with when political parties – Lab and LibNat – have been bought by the $’shundredsofthousands Fossil Fuel Industry ‘donations’.

    The GBR is dying in front of our eyes but here comes the Justine and ALP to the rescue, rah, rah, rah, with their version of the gas insanity that the LibNat first dreamt up with their ‘gas-led recovery’.

    Don’t vote for the climate wrecker LabLibNat Cartel.
    Vote 1 for Climate, vote for candidates that Greens, Teals, and Community Independents who fully embrace the actions in accordance with the climate scienec.

    • Yes, you have never been more right Joachim.
      I am saddened and sickened by the current Labor Party they are owned by every right-wing pressure group in existence, be it the filthy rich land-lords, the top five percent of squillionares, overseas multinationals and of course the MINING and PETROLEUM Moguls.
      The Labor Party once had standards and policies that benefited Australians, especially the workers who provide the wealth generated in our country. but look at it now, just another apologist for the fascist governments USUKA.
      Cheers, G”)

  2. Yep vote for greens and will see endless court cases and nothing much achieved. Can you show me which fossil fuel companies labor is beholden to?

    • Rod, the $’s in so called ‘donations’ isn’t secret.
      The AEC releases donations information each year.
      For 1/7/22 – 30/6/23 , get yourself onto Renew Economy https://reneweconomy.com.au/millions-in-fossil-fuel-money-rained-on-major-political-parties-last-year and dial up; ‘Millions in fossil fuel money rained on major political parties last year’, by Michael Mazengarb Feb 1, 2024
      It tells you all you need to know about how the Fossil Fuel Industry has bought out both Lab and LibNat.
      Then there is the ongoing $’s11billionsplus pa in public subsidies that the fossil fuel industry enjoys. Those $’s ‘donations’ working their magic to a treat for the fossil fuel industry.

      To save the climate and environment, the reckless and dangerous LabLibNat Cartel needs to be stopped.

  3. The only difference between Labor and the LNP when it comes to Climate Change is that Labor says it believes climate change is happening.
    Policy wise they are in lockstep with the Fossil Fuel Industry. Take Carbon Capture and Storage, a discredited techno fix, both parties place it over preserving and increasing native forests. What is a tree ? A forest ? if not a Carbon Capture and Storage facility of the first order ?
    We ignore the Science of Climate Change at our peril

    Save the forests and the trees, from the mountains to the seas.

    • “The only difference between Labor and the LNP when it comes to Climate Change is that Labor says it believes climate change is happening” … oh and that Labor has embarked on a genuine program of expansion of, and transition to, renewables.

      • The ALP, sure, doing some good with renewables but that doesn’t cut it when at the same time ALP is full tilt for the expansion of fossil fuel usage. You can’t be serious on climate if you keep expanding fossil fuel use.

  4. Could I suggest an excellent Guardian podcast: Full story – “Gaza through the eyes of two Australian doctors”. It’s generally very disturbing but gives an insight into the importance of keeping hospital powered.

    It may be that the Government – rather than being captured by the fossil fuel industry- understands that, as well as meeting emissions targets, there is the responsibility to keep providing power for the most basic needs of society.

    The science would say that we should stop using all fossil fuels tomorrow. Is anyone suggesting this is possible?

    • Lizardbreath, “The science would say…:”, but please tells us what the science actually is saying what we should be doing to stop the dangerous impacts of global heating.

    • John, 1000%.
      ALP’s ‘Future Gas Strategy 2050 and Beyond’ is the ALP’s turn ( LibNat had their “gas-led recovery” ) in government of being the stooge / hand puppet of the Fossil Fuel Industry.

      • The Greens future gas strategy that doesn’t exist, is an exercise in complete irresponsibility, if these ideological zelots think any responsible Govt can just magically transition from a fossil fuel based economy to a low carbon renewable economy in just a few short years and provide reliable energy and keep Australians in work, without a backup transition fuel they are beyond stupid. But of course this stupid behaviour is normal from the Greens, they can afford to peddle this irresponsible nonsense, because they are never in a position of authority and never have to pay the consequences when the shit hits the fan and the voters get pissed of when they loose their jobs and the lights go out.

        • Keith, Keith, Keith, clearly facts mean zero to you.
          I’ve written it in other spaces in the pages of The Echo.
          We / Australia, already produce more gas than what we need, we export 80% of the gas that we drill out of the ground.
          We don’t need any more / new gas. Case c l o s e d on the reckless and dangerous ALP’s Future Gas Strategy 2050 and Beyond.

          Keith, stupid behaviour, nice that you mentioned.
          Your gas / Methane emissions multiple times more harmful to climate compared with coal.
          The ALP out with Coal but IN with Gas, how stupid can you really be.
          But acting according to the climate science was never your / ALP strong suit.

          • I don’t think science, or logic, is your strong suit either Joachim. Who told you “ gas / Methane emissions multiple times more harmful to climate compared with coal”? Adam Bandt? Or do you just 🍒 pick – or say what suits?

          • Lizardbreath, I thought you were better than this, following old matey Keith down this anti-Adam Bandt / Greens distraction and diversion nonsense.
            The Methane, it is no secret about how harmful it is for climate. The information is and always has been out there.
            Somehow you are unable or incapable of doing some basic research. So sad.
            But Lizardbreath to assist you, try getting yourself onto https://www.unep.org and dial up, ‘Facts about Methane’, for a bit of science reading. It is cracking read to be sure.
            Amongst that reading – “Methane is a powerful and short-lived greenhouse gas, with a lifetime of about a decade and Global Warming Potential about 80 times greater than that of carbon dioxide (CO2) during the 20 years after it is released into the atmosphere. (IPCC).”

            And here come your and old mate Keithy’s heroes , the climate science denying Albo and Justine, with their Methane Strategy2050and Beyond. It just beggars belief.
            But this is what you get when a political party is bought off by The Fossil Fuel Industry.

            Happy to help, again.

          • Thanks Joachim, but I didn’t find anything here about the relative harm from gas versus coal emissions. That’s what I was asking you about ‘cause, dutifully doing my research, I’ve found quite different conclusions.

            I’m not denying we need to decarbonise (nor Keith I’d say. You Greens like to muddy the waters with copious hand wringing but no plan. That or you have a problem with grasping the point.

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