Media Releases | 23rd May, 2019

Andrews government set to spend millions of taxpayer dollars “aiding gas cartel”

Environment Victoria has criticised the Andrews government today going out to tender for stratigraphic drilling in the Otway Basin – giving the strongest indication yet of their plan to lift the moratorium on onshore conventional gas drilling.

Victoria’s moratorium on onshore conventional gas expires next year. With no word on its extension, Environment Victoria is calling on Premier Daniel Andrews to commit to a complete ban on new gas development and instead shift focus to reducing and eliminating the need to burn expensive gas.

“Looking for more gas is an irresponsible waste of public money,” said Jono La Nauze, CEO of Environment Victoria.

“The gas market is broken. It is too expensive for Victorians and the planet. Daniel Andrews cannot justify spending millions of taxpayer dollars propping it up.

“Our state government is set to spend millions trying to find expensive, climate-polluting fossil fuels to burn. They are putting the gas companies before the Victorian community and our environment.

“The Andrews government should take a leaf out of their own book and spend this money on innovative, clean energy projects such as Solar Homes. It is up to our government to help switch households and businesses to clean, sustainable energy and save money for people and businesses across Victoria.

“Countless governments have underinvested in programs that would help reduce gas consumption and save Victorians millions. Instead our leaders have spent millions propping up the dirty and polluting gas industry.

“Burning gas makes a significant contribution to Victoria’s greenhouse gas emissions. To start moving towards our target of net zero emissions by 2050, the Andrews government needs to develop a plan to get off gas, not spend money trying to drill more of it.

“Daniel Andrews is aiding the gas cartel and locking Victoria into decades more gas production that will increase our climate impact whilst doing nothing to reduce sky high gas prices.

“Our government should be focused on developing an exit plan. We know gas efficiency programs and switching to renewables-powered electricity will save money for homes and businesses. Drilling more gas won’t make it any cheaper.

“We are calling on the Andrews government to put the Victorian people and our environment first by ensuring the moratorium on onshore conventional gas continues and we transition to cleaner sources of energy,” said Mr La Nauze.

For interview and further comment

Jono La Nauze, Environment Victoria CEO

Mobile: 0402 904 251

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