On 23rd December 2021, the Environmental Defenders Office, reported that the Federal Court ruled as unlawful the Government’s contracts that granted public money to frack in the Beetaloo Basin. The EDO had already set up a legal challenge to the granting of $21 million of public money for a private oil and gas company to do exploratory fracking in the Northern Territory’s Beetaloo Basin, on climate grounds, when the resources minister Keith Pitt signed the contracts to hand over the money.
The Federal Court found it was “legally unreasonable” for the Federal Resources Minister Keith Pitt to enter into contracts over the grants while they were the subject of court proceedings. Surely the resources minister should have known this well enough at the time, and so it was very naughty of him to do so. This is in the mainstream political tradition of Australian Resources Ministers rubber stamping foreign corporate resources theft and environment despoliation. Its all about "feeding the markets", and accelerating biosphere destruction.
The problem is, this grant could open up the Beetaloo Basin to widespread fracking, which could release billions of tonnes of carbon emissions into the air. Gas extracted from the Basin could equate to a 13% increase in annual greenhouse gas emissions on Australia’s 2020 levels, at a time when we need to rapidly reduce pollution.
While it is disappointing that climate risk hasn’t been factored into this decision, the EDO won this case, before climate grounds are even considered, and the grant has been ruled invalid.
The overall context is that our global climate catastrophe is "locked in" and growing bigger, while fossil fuel corporations and political parties merrily continue to "Carry On" cashing themselves up by starting new greenhouse gas emissions projects.
We have a long way to go to start to save all our homes. And Santa's home - "Global Speech and Address" from Avaaz. The lives of the majority of our youngest generations are going be blighted by global systems failures due to consequences of our "Overshoot" within coming decades. Future global heating massively compounds our existence predicaments for future food and water.
Global mean CO2 trend is at 412 ppm, and continues to increase by more than 2ppm each year. Methane (CH4), NO2, and SF6 also continue to grow, so the COVID pandemic has not managed to fully halt global growth. (Source: NOAA - https://gml.noaa.gov/ccgg/trends/global.html)
2021 has also seen climate alarms raised over signs of early collapse of the Thwaites West Antarctica Ice Shelve.
The EDO appreciates having public support and donations, to help save all our homes.