350 Australia is tracking the fossil fuel lobby and its attempts to use the Covid-19 health crisis to its advantage. There are now 64 instances of the fossil fuel lobby and pro-fossil fuel politicians calling for policy changes to benefit their interests. Below is a weekly update on developments in the area.
Updates for 4 – 10 July:
- The Queensland Resources Council has intensified its calls for coal mining expansion in Queensland. The QRC is calling for the Queensland Government to immediately approve New Hope Group’s New Acland stage three expansion, despite it not yet passing legal hurdles. This week LNP and some Federal Labor MPs also called for the project to be approved.
- The peak oil and gas lobby group, the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA), is backing Angus Taylor’s technology roadmap due to its support for gas, and the promise to invest in unproven and expensive carbon capture and storage (CCS). APPEA also closed down its South Australian office, in an admission that drilling for oil in the Great Australian Bight is now unlikely to proceed.
- Links have been confirmed between the controversial Narrabri gas project and the National Covid-19 Coordination Commission (NCCC). Santos’ meeting with the Independent Planning Commission included discussion of the proposed Perdaman fertiliser plant and APA pipeline project. The Perdaman project is linked to a close associate of Nev Power, the chair of the NCCC, and James Fazzino of the NCCC’s Manufacturing Task Force is on the board of APA.
- The push from the industry for large-scale gas expansion under the cover of Covid-19 has continued, with the CEO of Origin Energy claiming ‘gas has a key role’ in the transition to renewable energy.