Trade unionists reject Morrison’s “Gas-Fired Recovery” - No to the Santos Narrabri Gas project - Climate jobs and justice now!
Recent bushfires, heatwaves and water-shortages have made it clear to millions of workers in Australia that we are living through a climate emergency.

But Scott Morrison’s “Gas-Fired Recovery” plan is fast-tracking approval for gas projects and pouring millions of dollars of public money into new gas infrastructure, at a time when we desperately need to shift away from fossil fuels and create jobs in renewable energy.

Morrison’s claim that gas is a “low-emissions” technology is a dangerous farce. Gas is a carbon-intensive fossil fuel and gas production involves large-scale fugitive emissions of methane, an incredibly potent greenhouse gas. A recent report by the Global Energy Monitor found that if the $56 billion of gas pipeline infrastructure planned in Australia is all built, this would allow pumping of green-houses gases equivalent to thirty-three 1000MW coal fired power stations.

In NSW alone, Morrison’s policy is driving the development of new gas fields, pipelines and potentially five new gas-fired power stations.

The Narrabri Gas project, with up to 850 coal-seam gas wells, would be a carbon bomb, destroy fragile ecosystems, desecrate Gamilaraay lands and threaten to pollute water in the Great Artesian Basin.

Morrison wants to build a new gas power station with public money at Kurri Kurri, to replace the ageing coal-fired plant at Liddell, and feed it with gas from Santos.

In the middle of an unemployment crisis following the COVID-19 pandemic, there is a desperate need for government action to create new, ongoing jobs.

Rather than a “Gas Fired recovery”, which will exacerbate climate change and lock in polluting infrastructure for generations to come, we call for an economic recovery policy based on principles of justice for workers, First Nations and the climate.

Many thousands of jobs could be created through massive investment in publicly owned and operated renewable energy, public transport and other infrastructure needed to rapidly decarbonise the economy. With proper planning, this would ensure a just transition for fossil-fuel workers and secure a future for other essential industries, workplaces and communities currently reliant on fossil-fuels.

We stand with Gamilaraay people resisting Santos’ plans to destroy their country and the many First Nations people across Australia also fighting against gas projects planned on their lands.

We recognise the rights of First Nations to control development on their lands and enjoy employment opportunities to manage and rehabilitate their lands.

We call on the trade union movement to commit to active opposition to Morrison’s “gas-fired recovery” and fight for climate jobs and justice.

We demand:
 + No to Morrison’s “Gas-Fired Recovery” - No new fossil-fuel projects.
+ A just transition for workers and communities currently reliant on fossil-fuels, including with job guarantees.
+ Santos out of the Pillaga and off Gamilaraay lands - stop the Narrabri gas project and supporting infrastructure.
+ Build a 100% publicly owned renewable energy system NOW!

Current signatories include:
Vanessa Seagrove, Assistant Secretary, Unions NSW
Paul Keating, Branch Secretary, MUA Sydney Branch
Brett Holmes, General Secretary, NSW Nurses and Midwives Association
Mark Northam, Secretary, IEU
Kylie Mckelvie, President, PSA
Denis McNamara, CFMEU Delegate
Steve Banks, Construction Organiser, ETU
Jacquie Myers, Vice-President, RPAH NSWNMA Branch
Natalie Wasley, Site committee delegate, MUA
Michael Namrell, Councillor and workplace representative, IEU
Amity Lynch NTEU Organiser
Hannah Archer Lawton NSWTF Organiser
Cassandra Barford NSWNMA Delegate
Keiko Yasukawa NTEU Delegate
Jan Ogden NSWNMA Branch President
Erin Francis NSWNMA Organiser
Skye Romer NSWNMA Branch Secretary
Kay Burns NSWNMA Delegate
Jim Donovan National Secretary MUA Veterans
Shane Reside MUA Sydney Branch Organiser
Fiona Maley NTEU Delegate
Charlotte Brady RAFFWU Delegate
Deanna Hayes NSWNMA Delegate
Viv Honan NSWTF Councillor
Angela Gittus NSWNMA Branch Secretary

This statement was initiated by Workers for Climate Action, Sydney.

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