Opposition against the Morrison government’s gas-fired coronavirus economic recovery plan continues to ramp up, with a new report saying emissions from the sector are underestimated.
The Climate Council report released on Thursday delves into the industry to make the case for renewables over gas.
It finds the industry itself is the second largest user of gas in the nation, with a chunk of it used to make liquefied natural gas to export.
Emissions from the gas sector continue to rise but the government argues it is helping other nations swap out coal for gas, reducing emissions overseas.
Climate Council chief Amanda McKenzie says emissions from gas aren’t accurately reported.
“Upstream emissions of gas, as well as other leaks, are under-reported, using out-of-date measures,” she said.
The Morrison government recently approved a controversial gas field in NSW’s Narrabri, paving the way for the $3.6 billion coal seam project to go ahead.
Narrabri local John Tough used to work in the gas industry but left after seeing the environmental impacts.
This included seeing a kangaroo die after drinking contaminated water and plants no longer surviving in areas where spills have occurred.
He’s worried the town will become an industrial wasteland.
“We don’t need to wreck the place, we can still make the energy out of the wind and out of the sunshine,” Mr Tough told AAP.
“People can’t see this for the future, they just see the mighty dollar now.”
He says the industry is dangerous for workers and chemical spills have long-lasting effects on the environment.
Chemicals seep into the sand, moving further each time it rains.
“It doesn’t die and it doesn’t break down.”