Media Releases | 7th May, 2020

Minister Wynne should reject AGL's call to rush through Crib Point approval

AGL’s calls for rushing through the assessment process on its proposed gas import terminal at Crib Point (as reported in today’s Age) should be rejected outright by Planning Minister Richard Wynne, Environment Victoria said today.

“Rushing through the assessment process for Victoria’s first gas import terminal would be a recipe for environmental disaster and is disrespectful to the local community,” said Environment Victoria Campaign Manager Dr Nicholas Aberle.

“AGL likes to talk the talk on respecting the community, but when given half a chance, they try to ditch proper process and ride roughshod over community concerns.

“If the assessment process occurs while physical distancing restrictions are still in place, Minister Wynne needs to take the time to ensure the community won’t be put in an unfair position as a result, given the potential impacts on the local environment.

“Important environmental reforms have been postponed for a year to allow industry to deal with the pandemic. Minister Wynne should afford the same respect to communities and ensure every effort is made to accommodate their needs through these difficult times.

“Communities are already at a disadvantage due to the complexity of the process. The last thing they need is an agitated energy company like AGL trying to barge through proper process during a public health crisis.

“The only winner from this gas import terminal would be AGL. They just want to sell more gas to Victorians, even though households would be better off switching from gas to efficient electric appliances. Gas is a fuel of the past.

“AGL knows their polluting gas terminal has no social licence anywhere on the Mornington Peninsula or around Westernport Bay,” said Dr Aberle.

Environment Victoria has previously written to Minister Wynne urging him to:

  1. Suspend the AGL Gas Import Jetty and Pipeline Project Environment Effects Statement (EES) process until a clear procedure for an online EES process can be developed and communicated to the public in a timely manner. This will ensure that this EES process can guarantee a transparent and integrated assessment of the potential effects AGL’s gas import terminal may have on the environment and the Westernport Bay community; and
  2. Increase the extension of the public exhibition phase to 40 business days, in view of the current challenging circumstances and the complexity of the project under assessment.

Dr Nicholas Aberle, Environment Victoria Campaign Manager
Mobile: 0402 512 121

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