Leader of the Australian Greens Adam Bandt MP has welcomed hints that the Labor Party is considering the long-standing Greens call to sign Joe Biden’s ‘Methane Pledge’ to reduce methane emissions by 30% by 2030, but said it could only be met by halting massive new gas projects like Betaloo and Scarborough. Further, existing projects simply ‘offsetting’ their emissions would not be enough to meet the pledge, said Mr Bandt.
Mr Bandt said that the real issue is not cows and agriculture, but the coal and gas industry. The gas industry is the country’s biggest user of gas, and with methane being 86 times more potent as a climate gas than CO2, meeting the pledge’s goals would require an end to the coal and gas industry’s expansion, whether under the Safeguard Mechanism or via other means.
With the East Coast of Australia being battered by heavy rain triggering flooding today, Mr Bandt also said the alternating pattern of summer floods and bushfires was clearly becoming more severe, underscoring the need to stop opening coal and gas mines.
Comment from Greens Leader, Adam Bandt:
“I’m glad the government is listening to the Greens’ long-standing calls for Australia to join US President Biden’s global methane pledge, but putting it into practice means stopping new coal and gas mines.”
“Labor can’t sign the methane pledge today and then open up new coal and gas mines tomorrow.
“The issue isn’t cow burps, it’s coal and gas. The pledge is aimed at the tax-dodging coal and gas corporations, not cows and agriculture.
“Signing Joe Biden’s methane pledge means stopping new coal and gas projects, whether through the Safeguard mechanism, a climate trigger or some other means.
“The heavy rain and predicted flooding across much of the east coast is devastating communities, and the coal- and gas-fuelled climate crisis is making it worse.”
“My office has been inundated with messages from people worried about the heavy rain, including from people in central Melbourne who are now wondering if they need to invest in sandbags.
“This is not normal. Unprecedented rainfall in Sydney, warnings of a month’s worth of flooding in Victoria, entire towns decimated in the Northern Rivers: this will all get worse if Labor keeps opening coal and gas mines.”