“We find ourselves with an abundance of coal and gas in the 20th century, making us one of the most prosperous societies in human history behind this fossil fuel,” he said in a statement given at the Carbon Markets Institute virtual conference on Monday. Wednesday.
“Now, 20 years into the 21st century, we know that coal and gas will not sustain sustainable prosperity, either for Australia or the rest of the world.
“In fact, we know that this fuel has enormous costs which until now have not been reflected in prices or government policies.
“The cost is the impact this fuel has on our climate, and also our health, our security, our safety and of course our continued prosperity.”
The Australian Trade Union, an influential voice in the Labor Rights faction, has stepped up its campaign in recent months to ensure gas plays a vital role in Australia’s post-pandemic recovery and in future energy needs.
In his filing with the federal government in May, AWU national secretary Daniel Walton said federal and state leaders must prepare to make major changes to Australia’s gas policy to maximize job creation and increase production capacity.
The workforce is involved in growth policy debate on whether to support gas production in the future, with some lawmakers violating the ALP’s grassroots environmental movement, known as LEAN, by supporting the development of new gas fields and the construction of new gas-fired power plants.
It is also divided over whether they should update their climate targets ahead of the next election from 2019 when they will cut emissions by 45 percent by 2030 by 2005 levels.
Outspoken resources spokesman Joel Fitzgibbon has faced internal criticism for advocating for the Labor Party to be more vocal in supporting gas development and supporting the coal industry.
Mr Butler said stepping back from fossil fuels was not a “left-wing idea” or a “political idea”, and outside politics was uncontroversial.
“Some people depend on this fuel as if it were a future where its use was diminished and finally ended is also a world where our common prosperity ended,” he said.
“It’s a sad and petty way of looking at what makes Australia great, and I’m sure that’s basically not true.”
Mr Fitzgibbon told Sky News Australia on Sunday that Mr Butler understood Australia needed to “get more gas out of the ground”.
“He knows that gas out of necessity will continue to play a role in our power generation system for a long time,” he said.
“I think he has a slightly different view on whether gas can compete in the market, but it’s the decisions of the people who make the investment decisions. There’s not much we don’t agree with.”
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Rob Harris is National Affairs Editor for The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age, based at Parliament House in Canberra
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