28 Jul 2023

Media Release: Victorian home gas ban ignores importance of gas in net zero energy mix

The Victorian Government’s gas ban for new homes ignores the fundamentals of the energy system transformation to net zero including the importance of gas as a partner to renewables in reliable electricity generation.

The Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association (APPEA) today said the Government’s policy shifts the burden on to consumers, pushing households on to an already strained coal-based electricity grid and ignoring the urgent need for new local gas supply to reduce emissions and put downward pressure on prices.

APPEA Chief Executive Samantha McCulloch said: “With more than 60% of Victoria’s electricity coming from coal, the focus should be on reducing emissions from the power sector, through renewable energy and firming gas power deployment, before adding to power demand.

“The Victorian Government is taking choice away from consumers for limited climate benefit while ignoring the fact that the best way to bring gas prices down is to invest in more gas supply.

“Victorians are paying at least $2/GJ more whenever gas is imported because the state has outsourced its energy security to Queensland by stifling onshore development for a decade with regulatory uncertainty and gas exploration bans.”

Ms McCulloch said Victoria should be heeding the calls of the Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO), which recently warned the state needed “substantial volumes of gas” to avoid shortfalls in coming years because it was relying on Queensland.

“The best way to avoid shortfalls and put downward pressure on prices is to bring on new gas supply close to where it is used because the cheapest gas is the gas closest to the customer,” she said.

“We need to ensure policy is based on robust, evidence-based analysis that recognises the importance of gas in supporting the transition of our energy system to net zero.”

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