Downward Spiral: Energy Regulator Sounds Alarm on Gas

19.11.21 By

The Australian Energy Regulator (AER), which enforces energy market rules, has issued a serious warning about investing in new gas, saying falling gas demand could leave Australia with stranded assets and soaring energy prices. 

The AER released a new paper that stresses: “gas infrastructure assets may be economically stranded” as gas struggles to compete with cheaper and clean renewable energy. This highlights serious risks in the federal government’s plans to use hundreds of millions of dollars in public money to expand and create new, unnecessary and expensive gas infrastructure.

Climate Councillor, energy expert and Senior Lecturer at Macquarie University, School of Law, Dr Madeline Taylor: “The AER has issued a warning that investment in new gas infrastructure could lead to stranded assets and risks pushing up power bills for consumers and industries, given that gas consumption must be rapidly phased out to be consistent with state and territory net zero policies.”

“Australian homes and businesses are already moving away from gas for economic and health reasons. This is a trend that will only continue because electrification is more efficient, affordable, and thanks to renewable energy, is cleaner and healthier,” said Dr Taylor.

“Investing in any unnecessary new infrastructure for the transportation of gas, that we could then be stuck with for more than 50 years, doesn’t make commercial sense, and may hurt the hip pockets of Australian households and businesses,” she said.  

“As stated by the AER, climate change and renewable energy policies continue to make renewable electricity more competitive against gas. Expanding the gas industry is at odds with the science, the recommendations of the International Energy Agency, and the Morrison government’s commitment to net zero by 2050,” said Dr Taylor. 

Vision and stills of Australian gas infrastructure available HERE


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