Gas: too good to burn? - Brisbane - Grattan Institute

The sharp rise in Australia’s gas prices and the changes in the gas market will impact how we use gas. In the last few years network charges have driven up retail gas prices, and liquefied natural gas exports from Queensland are about to earn big export dollars. While price increases will flow through to Australian customers, both households and businesses, the economic benefits of the change will be overwhelmingly positive and provide an opportunity too good to miss. Panel members shared their views on what this considerable shift means for consumers, reflected on whether we could or should switch away from gas, and if indeed a situation could arise in which our gas is priced out of the market.


Professor Andrew Garnett is Director of the UQ Centre for Coal Seam Gas (as well as Director of the UQ CCS Program).  A former Shell and Schlumberger executive, Andrew has over 25 years’ world-wide experience with oil majors in conventional and unconventional hydrocarbon exploration, appraisal and development projects.  Prior to joining the University of Queensland, Andrew consulted widely on unconventional developments, most notably those with high GHG emissions footprints, and worked on the 500MW, 60 MT ZeroGen IGCC & CCS Project, as manager for Carbon Transport and Storage and ultimately as CEO and Project Director.

Tony Wood is the Energy Program Director at Grattan Institute with deep experience in the energy sector. He worked at Origin Energy for 11 years, and was an adviser to the first Garnaut climate change review. Tony is also program director of Clean Energy Projects at the Clinton Foundation.

Mark Grenning has worked for Rio Tinto for 30 years, the last 18 years in roles associated with energy supply to operations covering many countries around the world. In his current role he is Rio Tinto’s global energy supply subject matter expert and leads a small team that advises the Group on energy supply issues from both a strategic and specific operational perspective. He is a Director and past Chairman of the Energy Users Association of Australia and has a long involvement in representing users’ interests in the governance structures and debates around electricity and gas markets in Australia.   

Tim O’Grady is General Manager of Public Policy at Origin Energy, responsible for developing and co-ordinating carbon, energy market and general policy positions across Origin’s portfolio of business interests. Tim has 25 years’ experience in the energy industry with senior positions in policy, strategy and wholesale and retail energy markets. A member of the board of the Energy Policy Institute of Australia, he holds degrees in engineering, mathematics and business.