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Australia backs gas beyond 2050 despite climate fears

  • May 9, 2024
  • 2 min read
Australia backs gas beyond 2050 despite climate fears

The Australian government has announced that it will be increasing its extraction and use of gas until “2050 and beyond” in spite of calls around the world to phase out fossil fuels. The government, headed by Prime Minister, Anthony Albanese, said that the move is required to shore up domestic energy supply as the country transitions to net zero.

However, critics describe the move as a rejection of science. The highlight the International Energy Agency (IEA) which call for “huge declines in the use of coal, oil and gas” if countries are to meet their climate goals.

Australia is among the largest exporter of liquified natural gas. It described the policy as part of “its commitment to being a reliable trading partner.” The strategy outlines the government’s plans to work with industry and state leaders, increasing its production and exploration of gas.

The government has also said that it would continue its support of the expansion of existing gas projects, The largest of these are run by Chevron and Woodside Energy Group in Western Australia. These moves, it has argued, are needed for Australia’s domestic energy supply on the way toward a target of delivering 82% renewable energy to the grid by 2030 and reaching net zero emissions by 2050.

Gas is currently responsible for 27% of Australia’s existing energy needs. However, most of what it produces is exported to various countries, including China, Japan, and South Korea. It is also responsible for around a quarter of the country’s total emissions, government data shows. This has led to backlash from environmental groups who say that it prioritises the interests of fossil fuel companies ahead of people.

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