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Pages tagged "Gas"


STATEMENT: Gas drilling moratorium is gone, but opposition remains

The temporary ban (moratorium) on onshore ‘conventional’ gas drilling, which has been in place across Victoria since 2014, expires today. This will leave significant areas across Gippsland and South West Victoria exposed to gas exploration.

The ban on unconventional gas drilling and fracking remains in place and is now enshrined in the state’s constitution.

"The decision by the Victorian government to reopen the state to gas companies is bad news for regional communities, for our farmers and for the climate," said Friends of the Earth Campaigns Co-ordinator Cam Walker.

"It is at odds with climate science, and the government’s own commitments to reduce greenhouse emissions to net zero by 2050. It will also do little to help consumers: the government’s own report found that the full development of known gas resources would not reduce wholesale gas prices."

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Ban on conventional onshore gas drilling lifting 1 July 2021

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What is happening?

The moratorium on onshore ‘conventional’ gas drilling has been in place across Victoria since 2014. It expires at the end of June 2021, meaning that new exploration and potentially drilling can start after that time. The ban on unconventional gas drilling and fracking remains in place and is now enshrined in the state’s constitution.

Where is the gas?

On July 1st, 2021 the temporary ban (moratorium) on conventional onshore drilling will be lifted.  This will leave areas in Gippsland and South West Victoria exposed to gas exploration.

DrillWatch community resource coming soon

While the Victorian government opening the state to gas companies is bad news for regional communities, for our farmers and for the climate, the good news is that a resource is being put together that will support communities to defend their land, health and future.

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Oceans on the front line in 'Gas-fired' recovery plans

The Federal Government has announced that a vast area of ocean around Australia will be offered up for offshore oil and gas exploration. This includes 21 areas across six basins covering 80,000 sq km in Commonwealth waters.

We know that seismic testing and oil and gas production is bad for marine environments and the life that depends on them. We know it is bad for commercial and recreational fishers. We know that communities don’t want to be looking out at drilling rigs in an otherwise pristine environment.

Recently the International Energy Agency (IEA) declared that there is no room for new fossil fuel investment if we’re to avoid catastrophic climate change.

Take action - say no to new plans to drill in the Bass Strait.

This announcement is at odds with climate science and community opinion. It is also at odds with our commitments made under the Paris climate agreement.

It includes a large section of the western coastline of Victoria,  from Port Campbell along the coastline that includes the Great Ocean Road and the 12 Apostles. Coastline that represents important sea-country and stories for First Nations groups.

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DrillWatch community resource coming soon

The ban on conventional gas drilling in Victoria will be no more from July.

It's clear the time for gas is approaching burnout. From the defeat of AGL's planned gas import terminal in Westernport to the thousands of students calling on the Federal Government to #FundOurFutureNotGas, communities across the country are calling for an end to fossil fuels.

But the removal of this temporary ban (moratorium) on gas drilling in Victoria from July 1, sends a signal to gas companies that Victoria is essentially open for business for a last ditch attempt to drill for drill for gas across Gippsland and South West Victoria.

This is bad news for regional communities, for our farmers and for the climate. 

The good news is that a resource is being put together that will support communities to defend their land, health and future.

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Friends of the Earth statement on onshore gas: The struggle continues

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On June 16, the Victorian Upper House voted on legislation to lift the moratorium on onshore gas development from June 30, 2021.

This is a heartbreaking outcome as the moratorium was the only protection communities and the natural world had from conventional onshore gas drilling.

But the fight is far from over.

Companies will not be able to apply for exploration licences until July 1, 2021. Then there is the approvals process, which takes time. We are likely at least two years away from any serious activity happening.

Community opposition will not go away.

It was the community of Seaspray that forced the Napthine government to enact the moratorium in 2014. This is because they were resolute in the face of attempts to drill for tight gas in their area, and they threatened peaceful protests and even a horse ride up Bourke Street to parliament.

Community members in Gippsland are still reeling from a delayed consultation process which took place just two weeks ago, and two months after the official report from the Victorian Gas Program was released. In Western Victoria the Protect the West Alliance, made up of farming communities, environmental groups, and locals concerned about the disruption of land water and communities recently released this statement in opposition to the lifting of the moratorium.

With all we know about climate science, the prospect of drilling new sources of gas looks like a worse decision than it was back in 2014.
Community resistance will happen when and where companies seek to develop onshore gas reserves. Friends of the Earth will be there to support them.

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Apollo Bay and Otway Ranges residents say "no" to offshore gas

Community members from Apollo Bay and the Otway Ranges held a paddle out on World Oceans day to object to the plans for offshore gas drilling in the waters of southwest Victoria and industrialisation of the Otway Basin.
 
OCEAN (Otway Climate Emergency Action Network), a newly formed community group, believes that expanding mining of our ocean is a backward step and a foolhardy plan when the science clearly identifies gas as a major contributor to the climate crisis:
 
"We have thriving tourist, fishing and farming industries that rely on the healthy, unspoiled environment of the southwest, said Lisa Deppeler of OCEAN. "What is our government thinking risking all of this?" 

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Why is the Government exploring a gas-lead recovery from a pandemic recession?

On this episode of The Grapevine, Cam Walker from Friends of the Earth gets on the line with Kulja and Dylan to discuss the likelihood of a gas-lead recovery from pandemic recession, Friends of the Earth remote Stay In Paddle Out action against off-shore drilling and the brumby issue.

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How to #StayInPaddleOut this World Oceans Day

The coastal waters of south western Victoria are under threat. Plans for rapid gas expansion of oil and gas drilling in the Otway Basin poses a direct threat to marine life and is bad for tourism. The burning of fossil fuels risks pushing us over an fast approaching tipping point of global emissions and irreversible climate change. 

Join us on World Oceans Day, Monday 8th June for our #StayInPaddleOut action to say #NoNewGas in the Otway Basin!

Help! I’m a city slicker stuck at home during COVID-19 but I still want to participate in the Virtual Paddle Out event this World Oceans Day on June 8th. Trouble is, I don’t have a kayak or a surfboard! What can I do to support this cause and say #NoNewGas while I #StayInPaddleOut?

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South West VIC Community Responds to Scrapped Gas Ban

Community members in South West Victoria have responded to the lifting of the moratorium on onshore gas drilling. 

Members of the Protect the West Alliance from the Otways to Portland have collected over 1000 signatures on a petition calling for an extension of a ban on onshore gas exploration.

Premier Dan Andrews made the announcement to scrap the temporary ban on onshore gas drilling in March, one day after declaring a state of emergency in response to the emerging COVID-19 pandemic. 

Yesterday, the Petroleum Legislation Amendment Bill was moved in the Victorian parliament to formally lift the ban.  The Bill was met with criticism from The Victorian Greens, who noted that the Andrew’s government had significantly underestimated the environmental impact that an expansion of the gas industry would cause, and that the government was better off prioritising support towards growing the renewable energy sector (Renew Economy, 2 June 2020).

Community opposition to drilling remains strong across regional Victoria with over 70 communities declaring themselves 'gasfield free' as part of the campaign that also banned fracking.

 

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