Home > Super fund ‘engagement’ fails to stop Woodside and BHP pressing go on Scarborough carbon bomb

Super fund ‘engagement’ fails to stop Woodside and BHP pressing go on Scarborough carbon bomb

23 November 2021

23 November 2021

Late yesterday, oil and gas giant Woodside announced it had made a final investment decision to go ahead with its climate-wrecking Scarborough gas project, which includes a huge new offshore gas field (Scarborough) and a new onshore gas processing plant (Pluto 2).

BHP, which currently owns 26.5% of the Scarborough gas field but is in the process of offloading all its oil and gas assets to Woodside, has effectively enabled Woodside to go ahead with this project, while attempting to avoid ongoing responsibility for the emissions associated with the project—estimated at up to 1.69 billion tonnes of CO2 over its lifetime.

Along with these emissions, which would be equivalent to running 15 coal power stations for 30 years, the project also threatens irreplaceable Murujuga Aboriginal rock art, which is under consideration for World Heritage listing, and fragile marine life.

But the fight against Scarborough gas has only just begun. If Woodside, BHP, and their investors think the community will stand idly by while they detonate this giant carbon bomb, they are sorely mistaken. 

Almost every super fund in the country invests in Woodside and BHP. Take action demanding these funds reveal how they engaged with Woodside and BHP to try to stop the climate-wrecking Scarborough gas project.

The International Energy Agency has confirmed there is no room for new gas projects if we are to limit warming to 1.5°C, and independent analysis by Carbon Tracker has confirmed this project is incompatible with even a catastrophic 2.7°C warming scenario.

Australia’s super funds have repeatedly told us they prefer to engage with fossil fuel companies to try to bring them into line on climate goals, rather than divest. But if years of engagement hasn’t been able to stop Woodside and BHP pursuing the biggest new gas development in Australia for a decade, then that engagement is worthless.

We need our super funds to prove they fought tooth and nail against this project, and that they have a plan to forcefully push back on this disastrous decision. Take action today.

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