The Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) has published an analysis of the climate advocacy of the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association (APPEA) to coincide with its annual conference starting today in Perth.
APPEA has been the driving force behind the Australian government’s ‘gas-fired recovery’. To date, the Australian government has committed nearly AU$2 billion in subsidies for exploration, infrastructure and incentives for technological fixes that will largely benefit the gas industry. APPEA has claimed credit for this suite of policies.
Despite its claimed notional support for net zero emissions by 2050, APPEA, and the oil and gas industry in Australia remain serious obstacles to ambitious and effective national climate policy:
- APPEA continues to oppose climate policy where such policy may impede the growth of the oil and gas industry;
- APPEA claims Australian LNG exports are reducing emissions, without evidence, while overlooking the actual emissions footprint of exported Australian gas;
- APPEA’s net zero commitment excludes the Scope 3 emissions from LNG exports, which are far greater than the industry's total domestic emissions;
- APPEA continues to lobby for a rapid expansion of the oil and gas industry, despite the major buyers of Australian LNG—Japan, Korea and China—committing to net zero emissions by mid-century;
- The substantial increase in Australia’s LNG exports since 2015 is one of the primary reasons Australia’s domestic emissions are not declining, despite significant decreases in emissions in the electricity sector;
Over the last three years, APPEA has significantly increased its spending on public communications and advertising campaigns extolling the virtues of gas, especially in the home, as the gas industry faces the threat of electrification.
Dan Gocher, Director of Climate & Environment at the Australasian Centre for Corporate Responsibility (ACCR) said:
“APPEA and its members are not a solution to the climate crisis, they are the cause of it.
“The unbridled growth of Australia’s oil and gas industry over the last decade has increased emissions in Australia and globally.
“APPEA boasted to its members about its successful campaign for a ‘gas-fired recovery’, and the flood of subsidies to the industry that came with it.
“This is an industry under pressure. 2020 saw massive writedowns across the industry, and the only thing that makes some of these gasfields viable is taxpayer-funded subsidies.
“APPEA and its members are not interested in transition, they are only interested in the endless expansion of oil and gas production.
“Investors in APPEA member companies must take action. These companies are lobbying against climate policy, and remain one of the biggest obstacles to climate action.”
Download ACCR’s briefing on APPEA and its climate advocacy.