The fossil fuel lobby has captured democracies across the world and continues to push for further expansion despite the need for a transition to clean technology. The scale of the climate crisis we face is unprecedented. Action is needed now more than ever.

At 350.org we want communities to take back democracy from the hands of the big polluters and ensure our elected officials get on with the job of tackling the climate crisis. As a major fossil fuel producer and exporter, this is as important in Western Australia (WA) as it is anywhere in the world.

Download the full report here (PDF)

Key findings:

  1. Political donations are often made on the same day as meetings with ministers. For the first time, the dates of political donations have been compared to the dates of meetings between gas lobbyists and four WA ministers, including the Premier.
  2. Political donations correspond with political decisions. For the first time, political donations have been mapped on timelines to reveal peaks in donations that correspond to decisions affecting the donors.
  3. Emissions and offset conditions on gas projects are weak, and not being met. The first visual representations of greenhouse gas emissions and offsets for five of WA’s biggest emitting projects shows large differences between emissions created, offset requirements and actual offsets.
  4. Woodside Petroleum is the most powerful political player from the gas industry in Western Australia
    1. Woodside Petroleum (Woodside) representatives frequently meet with government ministers more often than representatives from other fossil fuel companies.
    2. Woodside hosted Premier Mark McGowan at a board dinner in 2019.
    3. The National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority’s current and previous two Chairs had previously worked for Woodside.
  5. There is a revolving door between WA’s fossil fuel industry, political offices, and the state bureaucracy. The first representation of WA’s revolving door between political staff, government positions, fossil fuel companies and lobbyists, demonstrates significant movement between the fossil fuel industry and WA politics and bureaucracy.

Take action:

Addressing the insidious influence of the fossil fuel lobby is no small task. However, if we want our government to take meaningful action on climate change, we need to diminish their power whilst building our own.

We can build our power by making our voices heard by those we elect to represent us. Politicians should be prioritising the voices of the community over the voices of the fossil fuel lobby.

You can use this report to raise your concerns about the fossil fuel lobby’s influence with your MP. If enough people raise their concerns with MPs across the state, we can make this an issue at election time.

How to use this report:

  1. Arrange a meeting with your local MP. This can be a daunting prospect, but remember that you have all the facts in front of you. Take a friend or go in a group, and get in touch with 350 Boorloo Perth for support.
  2. Use this report as a guide to talk through some of the main threats WA faces from the gas industry. During your conversation, make a note of your MP’s comments and commitments to each recommendation. You can use these notes to follow up and hold them to any commitments they make.
  3. Celebrate! Get a photo with the MP, send it to us and tag us on social media. Get in touch and let us know how it went.
  4. Talk to other people in your community and encourage them to do the same. Growing a movement of people to raise these concerns is the only way we will make this an issue that your MP cannot ignore.
  5. Keep in touch and stay involved. Stay in touch with your MP – ask for updates about how they are addressing the issues you discussed.
  6. Stay involved with 350 Boorloo Perth or start a community group.