The Great Ocean Road is at risk of becoming a giant gas field. We need to protect it!

People holding surf boards with messages

Did you know the beautiful stretch of ocean from Tasmania all the way to South Australia (including the gloriously long and beautiful Great Ocean Road) is at risk of becoming a giant gas field? 

If you have been lucky enough to take a road trip down the great Ocean Road, or dip your toes into the icy waters of Tasmania - you know it’s an incredibly special coastline. It’s raw, it’s wild and abundant in incredible marine life, including blue whales. 

These wild southern coastlines and the communities that call the coast home are lucky to live among some of the cleanest and most pristine waters in the world. These same waters are relied on everyday by local communities for recreational fishing, surfing, commercial fishing, diving and everyday living. Despite how beautiful and ecologically, economically and spiritually important these coastlines are - right now, they are at risk of becoming a giant fossil fuel field.

What’s happening?

It seems both the oil and gas companies and our governments are determined to turning the Great Ocean Road into the Great Ocean Industrial Gas Zone, with the area fast becoming an offshore hub for gas production. Now, we are not marine scientists, but we do know one thing about the Southern Ocean - it is WILD! And the wildest place on earth is not a place for a gas field! Just like our friends at Surfrider Foundation Australia say, drilling for oil & gas in the Southern Ocean is a disaster waiting to happen. Offshore gas rigs and heaving 20 foot monster swells charging in from the south west are a dangerous combination.

The biggest threat right now is a plan to seismic blast the ocean from Tasmania all the way to South Australia - this is the entire bottom of Australia! Gas exploration means seismic surveying. Explosive shock waves twice as loud as the sound of a jet plane taking off are blasted into the ocean every few seconds, for 24 hours a day, weeks and months on end. And this plan by mega international corporations Schlumberger and TGS may just be the largest seismic survey for oil and gas in history, covering more than 90,000 square km of seabed — an area larger than Tasmania, or even bigger than the Country of Sri Lanka! 

Seismic blasting has a disastrous impact on marine life - considering this is one of the blue whale feeding places in the world - this is not a place to blast! And seismic blasting is just the first step in drilling the ocean for oil & gas. If after all the destructive blasting oil & gas is found, big fossil fuel companies will further threaten these oceans by drilling for oil & gas in the sea. 

And that’s not even taking into account the destructive impacts these fossil fool companies are having on the climate crisis when these fossil fuels are burned, further driving the climate crisis into seriously scary territory. The truth is - we can’t cheat science, and any new fossil fuel projects will have a disastrous impact on our planet by fueling the climate crisis further and locking Australia and the world on a path to overshoot 1.5Cº. Scientists have suggested that all new investments in fossil projects and infrastructure must stop now, particularly for the most developed economies like Australia. Every dollar spent on a fossil fuel project is a dollar that isn’t being spent on the transition to a clean energy economy which we must begin to rapidly accelerate.

Take action! 

It’s time to kick these big planet wrecking companies and oil & gas field plans out of the Southern Ocean for good! The Southern Ocean is for blue whales, not gas and oil rigs!

Take action! You can sign petitions opposing new offshore gas in the Southern Sea Country here and take action in solidarity with First Nations to protect Gunditjmara (Southern) Sea Country here.