Climate groups from across Perth and WA have gathered outside BHP’s Perth headquarters to protest the sale of the mining giant’s global petroleum arm to Woodside.
In a deal estimated to be worth $40bn, BHP’s oil and gas assets mainly located in Australia and the Gulf of Mexico, would transfer to Woodside in a move which campaigners have suggested will ‘accelerate damage to the climate’.
Campaigners from 350 Perth; Sea Shephard and Fossil Free UWA attempted to deliver more than 5,000 individual petitions from across Australia urging BHP to prevent the controversial proposed Scarborough project in WA’s north west from progressing.
Environmental groups say that the project – which is currently awaiting final investment decision, would be among the most damaging fossil fuel projects in the Southern Hemisphere, releasing 1.6 billion tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere over its life.
The deal comes just a week after the IPCC released a damning indictment of the fossil fuel industry’s failure to act on emissions reduction.
Anthony Collins, a campaign er with the climate change movement, 350 Perth,
said: “The aim of today’s demonstration is quite simple. To show BHP that simply dumping their fossil fuel projects at the feet of Woodside is not going to cut it.
“Rather than take responsibility for the highly polluting petroleum business sites BHP has built, this is a cynical attempt to simply walk away.
“Ultimately, Woodside is acting as BHP’s ‘useful idiot’; taking on a burden that BHP has
decided is too toxic to touch.
“Woodside itself has demonstrated that it has no interest in anything other than producing as
much oil and gas as possible and has neither the ability nor the willingness to make its business model appropriate for the times in which we live. This deal allows them to continue expanding fossil fuel production, accelerating damage to the climate.
“This means more oil and gas in Western Australia and another step closer to the highly
controversial Scarborough project, which will release 1.6 billion tonnes of carbon into the atmosphere.”
Jeff Hansen, Managing Director of Sea Shepherd Australia, also spoke at the
demonstration, announcing the organisation’s role in the campaign to stop the Scarborough
“BHP and Woodside’s Scarborough climate bomb will have a direct, disastrous impact on
our precious marine life via a new pipeline from the Scarborough gas field to the Pluto
“This would involve dredging straight through the pristine Montebello Marine Park with a disastrous impact on the migratory route of endangered pygmy whales; turtles nestingnearby beaches; humpbacks; dugongs; dolphins; marine snakes and sawfish around the Burrup Peninsula and Dampier Archipelago.
“Sea Shepherd is calling on the investors and shareholders of BHP to use your position and
not allow this project to go ahead.”
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