The Australian Government has released a report into its review of the country’s climate change policies which highlights the important role of gas in reducing the country’s emissions.

The review was conducted by the Department of the Environment and Energy in 2017, to ensure the government’s climate change policies remained effective in achieving Australia’s 2030 target and Paris Agreement commitments.

The review looked at the opportunities and challenges of reducing emissions on a sector by sector basis, taking into consideration the different circumstances and characteristics of each sector.

APPEA Chief Executive, Dr Malcolm Roberts, said, “Achieving our 2030 emissions target at least cost to our economy is a significant challenge for Australia. The review confirms that natural gas has a major part to play in this transition.”

“Gas-fired generation is essential to maintaining reliable energy supply while reducing emissions from the electricity sector. On-call gas-fired peaking plants are the ideal back-up for intermittent renewable energy.

“Australia’s LNG exports are a clear, net positive for the global environment.

“Natural gas is not only a low-emissions fuel; replacing biomass and coal with gas markedly improves air quality. Air pollution, from various sources, is a major, preventable cause of premature deaths in developing countries.

“The 2017 review confirms the Government’s in-principle support for Australian businesses having access to international permits. APPEA welcomes this position and encourages the Government to allow as soon as possible the use of all credible domestic and international offsets.

“APPEA also welcomes the commitment to maintain some flexibility in the Safeguard Mechanism in the case of resource projects where emissions will fluctuate naturally.”

Dr Roberts said APPEA will continue to advocate for realistic treatment of trade‑exposed industries to maintain their international competitiveness and ensure Australia continues to attract investment.

“More gas development is a win for the environment and a win for Australian consumers. It should remain at the core of any climate change response.”  

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