A major new report backed by heavy industry, including fossil fuel producers such as Woodside Energy, highlights the case for no new gas, according to analysis by Greenpeace Australia Pacific.

The report from Australian Energy Transitions Initiative, a group that includes industry heavy-hitters Woodside, Orica, BHP, BlueScope Steel, Fortescue Metals Group, Rio Tinto and Wesfarmers, uses the International Energy Agency’s ‘Net Zero Emissions’ scenario as the reference case to determine decarbonisation pathways for liquified gas in Australia.

This scenario explicitly excludes opening up new gas fields beyond October 2021, such as Woodside’s planned Scarborough and Browse gas fields. All localised scenarios modelled in the Energy Transitions Initiative confirm a steep decline in liquified gas production.

Glenn Walker, Head of Advocacy and Strategy at Greenpeace Australia Pacific, said the report confirmed there is no place for new gas in Australia’s energy transition.

“Gas is a dirty, climate polluting fuel that must be rapidly phased out, and this report only hammers the nail into its coffin. There is no room for massive new gas fields such as Woodside’s Burrup Hub project, which under this model will eclipse Australia’s entire domestic liquified gas emissions budget by 2030,” he said.

“The Australian Energy Transitions report finds gas use will need to very steeply decline starting now and will only play a small and limited role in the Australian and global energy mix from 2040 onwards. Even then, this small role is mostly contingent on carbon capture and storage working, which is a risky bet given the decades-long failures of this technology.

“Woodside was an industry participant in this study yet it starkly confirms the company’s business model is broken. This should draw the immediate attention of Woodside’s investors and Board. The company needs to change course fast if it wants to survive in a rapidly decarbonising world.

“On the flipside, the report underscores the enormous investment, job and economic opportunities in transitioning to clean industries. It means a potential 1.3 million jobs and over $20 billion a year in new clean transition investment. Australia’s focus should be on this exciting opportunity rather than facilitating further massive growth of an LNG industry that needs to rapidly decline.”



Figure 21 from Australian Energy Transitions Technical Report