Australia’s oil and gas industry has reaffirmed its commitment to playing a key role in a cleaner energy future, both in Australia and globally, with the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) releasing the third edition of its climate change policy principles today.
APPEA’s newly released report, Australia’s Cleaner Energy Future, which incorporates the principles, outlines the industry’s consistent position on climate change.
The policy principles highlight how the sector is committed to meeting emissions reduction targets consistent with the objectives of the Paris Agreement, while maintaining affordable, secure energy supplies to consumers and industries that provide jobs and economic growth.
A key focus of the principles is on how climate policy should be cohesive with other energy, international, trade, taxation, economic growth and environmental policies.
The sector also supports government policies and industry actions to get the economy to net-zero emissions by 2050.
APPEA Chief Executive, Andrew McConville, said for more than 15 years, Australia’s oil and gas industry has had a consistent policy on climate change, which endorses a national policy approach that supports both environmental objectives and industries that provide jobs and economic growth.
“The oil and gas industry supports a national climate change policy that delivers greenhouse gas emissions reductions, consistent with the objectives of the Paris Agreement and with net-zero emissions across the Australian economy by 2050 as part of a contribution to a goal of global net-zero emissions by 2050,” Mr McConville said.
“Greater use of Australian natural gas – in the domestic market, and LNG exported globally – can significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions both here and abroad.”
“Natural gas is a lower-emitting and cleaner-burning fuel than other sources, and it supports renewables and is a key pathway to large scale hydrogen development,” he said.
“This sector is fully committed to reducing its own greenhouse gas emissions and is rapidly advancing low emissions technologies such as carbon capture and storage and hydrogen. Both these technologies have been prioritised in the Australian Government’s Technology Investment Roadmap.”
The four key areas outlined in APPEA’s climate change principles include:
- Net-zero emissions by 2050 should be the goal of national and international policy.
- Climate policies should be efficient, enduring and integrated with economic, social, technology and energy policies.
- Australia’s international competitiveness should be enhanced. The Australian policy response should pursue climate policies that maximise growth in jobs and investment and maintain the competitiveness of Australian trade-exposed industries, such as LNG.
- Universal access to affordable, reliable, sustainable and modern energy must be achieved.
Mr McConville said a number of oil and gas producers in Australia and around the world are embracing net-zero emissions targets as an important step forward.
“This is a positive demonstration of the key role the industry can play in a cleaner energy future,” he said.
“It’s encouraging to see the entire industry is moving in the same direction by producing a lower emission energy source and taking action to reduce their own emissions.”
“Reducing global emissions is a global effort, and as an energy exporter, Australia is doing its part through many channels.”
“Australia’s oil and gas sector is working hard to reduce, offset and mitigate emissions in its operations,” Mr McConville added.
APPEA detailed in a separate report some of the initiatives underway by operators.
A summary of APPEA’s Climate Change Policy Principles can be found here.