E&OE: Check against delivery
Hi, I'm Madeleine King, Labor's Shadow Minister for Resources and Trade. I'm also the member for Brand in Western Australia. I'd like to welcome everyone here today to the APPEA Conference in Brisbane.
I'd like to start by acknowledging the traditional owners of the country that I am on here in Dampier, but also that you are all on right around the country. Indigenous heritage in this country is one of our great gifts, given to us by our First Nations sisters and brothers, and we must cherish it always.
I'd like to acknowledge incoming APPEA CEO Sarah McCulloch, and also acknowledge the efforts of outgoing CEO Andrew McConville. He's done amazing work, as has the whole the APPEA team. I've really enjoyed working with all of you for the last few years, and I look forward to working with Sarah into the future.
In the background behind me, you might be able to see one of the gas carriers taking a shipment off to one of the customers, probably Japan or South Korea. That's what this gas industry does here in Western Australia and around the country: powers the great cities of our region, such as Tokyo and Seoul, and many others.
I'm really pleased to have been able to visit many gas facilities, this one included, and I thank APLNG at Gladstone for showing me around their facility recently. Also INPEX in Broome and their facility in Darwin, and Chevron has hosted me and some of my parliamentary colleagues at Barrow Island, and also at Wheatstone in Onslow.
All of these facilities provide thousands of good, solid, secure Australian jobs. They are facilities that power our economy and power other cities. It’s the second or third highest export earner in this country and it will always be part of our energy mix.
I want to be clear how enthusiastic I am and Labor is for this industry, because we know that it creates jobs and creates livelihoods, including right here in Dampier and Karratha. There are many thousands of people that have worked on this project behind me for many years, but also continue to work in operations. As there are up in Barrow, of course, and Onslow and Broome and Darwin and Curtis Island and other places right across this country.
Friends, my two portfolios are Trade and Resources, and they are enormously complementary. The bulk of our resources (including LNG) are exported, and our resources exporters are important ballast in our trading relationships: Australia's oil and gas sector exported $60.2 billion in 2019-20, mostly to North Asia.
One of the important things that the dual portfolios have afforded me is a much wider view of the economic opportunities facing our nation. We're at a turning point in the global economy, a period of flux and change. There are great risks, great challenges, and great shifts in how the world works and how goods and services flow across international borders.
Australia is facing a choice: shape the future or be shaped by it.
The new global economy that is emerging is principally one focused on energy: energy sources; energy transport; energy storage; energy usage.
It's an extraordinary time to be in the energy game.
I'm sure you don't need me to list off the buffeting headwinds and golden opportunities facing the world. Suffice to say that, together, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the global march towards net zero emissions and the rise of geo-economic competition will continue to disrupt global energy markets for many years to come.
Friends, when I addressed the APPEA conference last year, I thanked APPEA and its members for the work you have been doing in pursuing net zero emissions targets, and I want to thank you again today.
APPEA supported government climate policies aimed at achieving net zero by 2050, even before the Government did. Individual APPEA members were developing and implementing short- and long-term emissions reduction strategies, long before the Government even acknowledged strategies were needed.
I have no doubt that the work of the business community in pursuing responsible approaches to mitigating climate risks played a key role in bringing the Government to finally and belatedly accepting a net zero emissions by 2050 target.
Gas will be part of our future energy mix. But it will also be part of the energy mix for other nations, and that's one of the responsibilities Australia has as an energy producer: to extract this gas and be able to provide a pathway for other nations to get to net zero emissions by 2050. Australian gas that will not only help Australia to get to that objective, but also our neighbours in North Asia. It’s something you should all be very proud of.
And I want to thank the industry for the work it has done to move your operations to a net zero emissions position. I know the enthusiasm many of you have about this. And no one can doubt, of course, the extraordinary enthusiasm of Kevin Gallagher at Santos for what Santos is seeking to achieve in carbon capture, use and storage. And the same goes for every other company here at this conference that is working on CCS possibilities.
Whenever I think of the oil and gas sector, I get excited. There's much to look forward to in coming years: opportunities and challenges that the sector is grasping and grappling with both hands. Here in Dampier, we are not far from Pluto LNG. It's going to be a real privilege to witness the development of the Scarborough fields following Woodside’s recent final investment decision.
And similarly, barely a week goes by in which I’m not briefed on a new project or development in the gas sector. A few weeks ago, I visited APLNG's plant in Gladstone, and a few months ago went with Chevron to Barrow Island.
Sincerely, I want to thank you for the work that you do as a sector. Thank you for always being accessible, open for a chat and not shy about telling me when you think we can do better.
I take this opportunity to pay tribute to all the workers in the industry, and the people at the conference today, and those who have worked in the industry in the past and that will work in the future. It's an industry with a very bright future. APPEA is doing well representing the industry to all sides of politics, as well they should.
I look forward to working with you all, whether in government or opposition, to build a better future for all Australians.