One Nation’s threat to ban the gas industry in Queensland, despite the industry’s 50-year record of safe operations, will kill jobs and drive up gas prices for the 885,000 Queensland households and businesses that rely on bottled and piped gas.
Removing one-third of the east coast gas market’s supply would also mean higher electricity prices and huge risks to secure energy supply.
Queensland APPEA Director Rhys Turner said One Nation would inflict upon Queensland the very problems being experienced in the south-eastern states where bans and moratoriums on gas projects have damaged the economies and reputations of New South Wales and Victoria.
“Unlike other states, Queensland is in the enviable position where it produces enough natural gas to supply all of its needs – including gas-fired generation, manufacturing and household use,” Mr Turner said.
“There is no substitute for natural gas at present in these uses and removing supply from Queensland would therefore have drastic consequences for the economy, jobs, and households.
“Unfortunately, this is exactly what One Nation would be inflicting upon Queensland.”
Data for 2016 shows that through direct, indirect and consumption-based activities the industry supported 60,582 jobs across the state. In 2016 alone, the industry generated economic activity valued at approximately $12.8 billion.
“The 2017-18 Queensland Budget estimates that the State will collect an estimated $885 million in direct payments from the industry via petroleum royalties over the next four years. These funds pay for schools, hospitals and other essential services,” Mr Turner said.
“As well, more than $300 million has been paid to landholders in coexistence payments over the last four years.
“Gas and energy are high-tech industries employing skilled highly paid labour, particularly in regional communities. Given the scale of the gas industry’s operations the sector is justifiably proud of the jobs and economic activity it generates.”