THE CLIMATE COUNCIL is calling on all governments to speed up plans to phase out gas in light of the Australian Energy Market Operators latest annual Gas Statement of Opportunities report released today.
Dr Madeline Taylor, Climate Councillor, Senior Lecturer at Macquarie University, School of Law and energy expert said: “Australia does not have a gas supply problem. Australia produces five times more gas each year than is used for domestic purposes, and 80 per cent of Australia’s gas is exported or used by the gas industry itself.”
“Expanding gas use will only make Australia more susceptible to global energy shocks like we are seeing in Russia right now.”
“Australian gas production has tripled in the past decade, yet gas prices have gone up and up, not down – and it’s the most expensive form of power in Australia, driving up power bills.”
“The quickest and cheapest way to increase Australia’s supply of clean, secure, affordable energy into our electricity systems is to replace gas with renewables.”
Victoria is already developing plans to reduce gas use with its Gas Substitution Roadmap expected later this year, which will outline the state’s plan to decarbonise the gas sector. Places like the ACT and New York in the US, have implemented similar policies, and a recent Climate Council report outlined the first-ever plan to get Australia’s most populous state, NSW, off gas.
“Renewables are already replacing gas in the electricity sector, with gas use in 2021 falling to its lowest level in more than 15 years in the National Electricity Market,” Dr Taylor added.
The Climate Council recommends Australia triple its efforts and aim to reduce its national emissions by 75% by 2030, and reach net zero by 2035.
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