Surfers back Bill to ban offshore drilling in Victoria

Female surfer in wetsuit stands with board in front of angry looking ocean (surfers bill)
Image: Shutterstock

Victorian surfers are swinging in behind a new Bill that would ban offshore drilling for oil and gas in Victoria, which is being introduced to the Victorian Parliament today.

The Offshore Petroleum and Greenhouse Gas Storage Amendment (No New Oil or Gas Activities) Bill 2022 would place an important and immediate ban on any future offshore drilling to protect the precious coastlines and marine life of Victoria.

Related article: Tasmanians protest ConocoPhillips seismic tests

This Bill follows a ban on offshore drilling and mining by the NSW Government two weeks ago, and Surfers For Climate supports these bold and necessary moves by state governments, applauding MPs who step up and use their power to enforce climate solutions. 

Surfers For Climate member Dani Harmshaw is attending Victorian Parliament to support the Bill with her wetsuit and board, promoting positive climate action and the protection of the ocean. 

“I’ve spent most of my life either on, in or by the ocean. It’s such a unique system that just gives and gives to humanity. If we continue to allow offshore drilling in Victoria we risk polluting the ocean and devastating a delicate ecosystem full of whales, seals, dolphins, local fish species, birds, not to mention all the strange and curious species in the ocean that everyone forgets about like squids and kelps. It’s time we stop taking from the ocean and stop being so consumptive as a species, or at the very least use renewable energy sources to fuel our existence,” the ecologist and Mornington Peninsula resident said. 

Surfers for Climate has been campaigning against new offshore gas to protect beaches and marine life from risks of oil spill and dangerous seismic testing and worsening global warming.

“Victorian waters are no place for gas and oil fields. Fossil fuels must be kept in the ground and no one should be left behind as we collectively embrace lower emissions energy sources such as wind and solar,” Harmshaw said.

Related article: Federal government rejects PEP11

Surfers For Climate co-founder and Aireys Inlet resident Belinda Baggs said, “It’s evident that climate change is here, sadly affecting us all. The window for action is closing. Opening up new areas for fossil fuel exploration is just ridiculous.

“Surfers across Victoria don’t want to see pristine tracts of ocean and sacred beaches turned into a giant gas field. Just like what happened in NSW recently, we hope this Bill will be passed and come into effect in order to keep our wild oceans safe and limit global warming.” 

Previous articleExpert reveals Australia’s hydrogen early adopters
Next articleLimitless power arriving too late: why fusion won’t help us decarbonise