12 January 2018

Minister for Resources Tim Pallas today launched the first Victorian Gas Program Progress Report, with initial analysis showing Victoria’s onshore conventional gas resources are much smaller than its vast offshore resources.

He launched the report with Victoria’s Lead Scientist Dr Amanda Caples at the Core Library in Werribee, where they discussed samples of rock from south west Victoria that will help inform the program’s research.

The report references the following desktop estimates of Victoria’s gas resources.

This scientific report stands in stark contrast to the ill-informed rhetoric of the Turnbull Government, whose mantra when it comes to gas – whether it’s present under the ground or not – is to simply drill.

The Andrews Labor Government has committed $42.5 million to fund a comprehensive program of geoscience and environmental research.

This will produce a more rigorous and auditable assessment of Victoria’s onshore conventional gas resources, using existing core samples, 3D modelling, and further drilling. It will also further assess possible environmental hazards associated with gas extraction along with potential controls.

When asked to put politics aside and support the program, which includes measures to further develop Victoria’s vast offshore resources, Malcolm Turnbull once again tried to bully Victoria into overturning its fracking ban.

That’s simply not going to happen. We’ve banned fracking to protect our valuable farming sector – a sector that earns around $13 billion a year in exports and employs around 190,000 people.

Victoria doesn’t have a shortage of gas. The reason gas bills are up under Malcolm Turnbull is because his government keeps letting Australian gas be exported overseas, instead of putting our homes and businesses first.

Quotes attributable to the Minister for Resources and Member for Werribee, Tim Pallas

“Following the historic banning of fracking and coal seam gas extraction to protect farming, we have invested in science to produce a sound gas resource estimate and assessment of risks.”

“Our approach is in contrast to the Turnbull Government and the Prime Minister for Sydney who continues to play politics on this issue and whose instinct is to drill and damn the consequences. That may be a Macquarie St investment banker’s approach but it treats regional Victoria and their vital primary industries with contempt.”