The Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) has lodged a submission to the Western Australian Environmental Protection Authority (EPA)’s Background Paper on Greenhouse Gas Assessment Guidance, urging national and international emissions reduction policies over ‘ad-hoc’ regional measures.
APPEA Chief Executive, Andrew McConville, said the effective and efficient management of greenhouse gas emissions is an issue the oil and gas industry takes seriously, and that the APPEA and its members have been engaged constructively in policy development for over 25 years.
“APPEA supports national climate change policies that reduce greenhouse gas emissions at least cost and facilitates investment decisions consistent with an international price on carbon,” Mr McConville said.
“This means we support the Australian Government leading on climate change policy responses, as the signatory to Australia’s Paris Agreement commitments.”
“It also means duplicative and inconsistent requirements should not be imposed through the actions of a single regulatory agency (such as the EPA) in a jurisdiction (such as WA) to a limited number of large projects.”
WA has a reputation as a stable investment destination, however, Mr McConville says that the original WA EPA guidelines – released in March 2019 – would have sent a ‘worrying signal’ to prospective investors.
“The oil and gas industry has invested billions of dollars in the WA economy in recent years, developing projects to supply cleaner energy to both the WA and our Asian trading partners. With billions of dollars in future investment under consideration, clarity on the policy approach in Western Australia is vital,” Mr McConville said.
“When new WA EPA guidelines are released, they should acknowledge the actions that are underway at a national and a state level.”
Furthermore, Mr McConville maintains that WA projects can play a key role in lowering global emissions and that our LNG exports are contributing to a cleaner energy sector in Asia.
According to updated Australian Government estimates, Australia’s LNG have the potential to reduce global emissions by up to 152 million tonnes per year – equal to 28 per cent of Australia’s annual emissions.
“LNG exports from WA play a substantial role in achieving this outcome,” Mr McConville said.