Sitting off Australia's coast are scores of rusting fossil gas and oil rigs, hundreds of wells and thousands of kilometres of pipeline, all of which need to be retired over coming years.
In addition, 2600 platforms, amounting to 7.5 million tonnes of steel, will need to be decommissioned across the Indo-Pacific region over the next decade.
The growing number of redundant gas and oil assets off the WA coast would be towed or shipped to a large onshore facility to be cleaned and scrapped, with the steel and other products recycled.
The new facility would be paid for by an extension to the existing offshore decommissioning levy, and any profits would be granted to the area’s Traditional Owners, the Kariyarra people.
An ARRC, funded by this federal, industry-wide levy, would ensure oil and gas firms now enjoying extraordinary financial windfalls would pay, themselves, for the clean-up of drilling sites, rather than writing decommissioning off on tax, at the expense of the Australian population as happens now.
It's not too late however. We can still urge the Federal Government to seize this opportunity to transform offshore gas and oil rig decommissioning in Australia by forming a new industry that will create thousands of direct and indirect jobs.