There are some things in life that are just good. Like icecream with lots of chunks and swirls, or mum's cooking.
There are also things that are just bad news, and one of these is the gas and oil proposal PEP11. PEP11 stands for Petroleum Exploration Permit 11—a sneaky way of saying a licence to turn the coast from Manly to Newcastle into a gas field.
This coastline is no place for a gas field, so for years, community groups like Surfrider Foundation and Save our Coast worked hard to stop PEP11. In December 2021, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced he was stopping the exploration permit for PEP11 because the community put so much pressure on him to do it.
Why is PEP11 back on the table again?
Unfortunately, the cancellation was a little more complicated as Scott Morrison had secretly sworn himself in as Resources Minister to make the call. Not even the actual Resources Minister knew. Once this news got out, the fossil fuel companies that own PEP11 exploration permit took the new Federal Government to court, challenging Morrison’s original decision.
Last week, the Government announced the fossil fuel companies and the Federal Government had reached an agreement to end court proceedings and start the approval process all over again. This means that the dirty PEP11 project is back on the table, yet again.
The decision to approve or deny a new permit for PEP11 will now fall back on the NSW and Federal Governments. The NSW Government last year ruled out all offshore exploration and mining, but we need the Federal Government to do the same.
Why is PEP11 such a bad idea?
Nobody wants this gas field to go ahead apart from the gas company. If fossil fuel companies are allowed to drill our ocean,our beaches, communities, local economies, and one of the world’s largest whale migration routes, are all at risk. PEP11 is a threat to our coastline, but also to our planet because we know we need to stop all new oil and gas projects if we are going to prevent the worst effects of climate change.
Can I do anything about it?
The decision sits with the Resources Minister in parliament - you can write them a letter to let them know you are against PEP11 from going ahead - your voice is powerful! Take action now and write to Resources Minister Madeleine King to tell her you don’t want to see PEP11 happen.
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