The independent Australian Energy Market Operator’s (AEMO) latest report shows that Victorian gas exports to other states have fallen by almost 70 per cent since 2017.
With the average market price for Victorian gas having been $8.22 a gigajoule (GJ), this represents an opportunity loss for Victoria’s economy of more than $1.7 billion since the beginning of 2018.
That money would have flowed back into the Victorian economy, through increased tax revenue, consumption, economic activity and job creation. It would have benefited all Victorians.
This drop in Victorian gas exports cannot be explained away by saying more gas is being reserved for Victorian use.
The truth is, total Victorian gas production has fallen by 18 per cent in just two years.
No wonder Victorian gas prices increased by over 125 per cent between December 2014 and December 2019, with Labor’s policies hitting Victorian families’ hip pocket.
Labor’s moratorium on conventional onshore gas exploration saw Victorian gas production drop by almost a fifth since 2017. This moratorium now remains in place until 1 July 2021, despite an announced intention to lift it.
The policies of the Andrews Labor Government have cost exporters more than $1.7 billion and seen Victorian gas prices more than double.
Comments attributable to Shadow Minister for Energy and Renewables, Ryan Smith:
“Labor’s gas policies have disastrously failed and have had a devastating impact on the Victorian economy.
“Victorians cannot afford the cost of Labor’s plan to delay lifting the conventional onshore gas exploration moratorium by another year.
“Labor’s failed conventional onshore gas exploration moratorium must be lifted immediately.”