Workshops: Tools for Surf Activists
There are two more workshops coming up, which will focus on how locals can make positive change and oppose gas in the PEP11 zone, which spans the coast from Sydney to Newcastle.
The interactive events bring together experienced trainers from the non-profit world and surf activists, to share their knowledge.
In recent years, surfers in Australia have been instrumental in saving great swathes of pristine coastline from development as oil and gas fields. The 'Fight for the Bight' saw tens of thousands of people paddle out to save the Great Australian Bight…and saw a movement come to life.
Now, Big Gas is making its last stand. As the world moves toward clean energy sources, fossil fuel giants are racing to develop new resources before their time runs out. For the surfers and coastal communities of Australia, that means gas rigs offshore from popular coastlines.
From Ningaloo to Newcastle, the people of our coast are standing up and paddling out for a natural coastline and a clean energy future.
Sean Doherty has penned a great primer on the offshore gas industry in Australia that delves into the two pivotal fronts on which we are initially focusing: The Otway Basin and PEP11.
"At a time when the rest of the world is already building clean energy systems for the future, Australia is stubbornly digging out more fossil fuels. Our reaction to the climate crisis is to go down a dead end of history, and for what? The gas cartel has looked after their own profits ahead of the Australian people. Most of the gas produced in Australia is exported; so much has been exported that in recent years Australia has at times had to import back the same gas it exported, paying a premium. So much gas is exported that the gas companies then cry “gas shortage” and lobby for more areas of the country to be opened up to development.
"Why has this been allowed to happen? In Australia it’s hard to tell where the government stops and the fossil fuel industry starts. Governments are stacked with connections to coal, oil and gas. There is also a steady flow of political donations going to both major political parties. The fossil fuel lobby has deep pockets and powerful friends, and as gas makes its last stand they’re not going quietly."