‘Zero return’: government savaged over taxpayer grants to open up new gas basin in Australia

Coalition funding for gas exploration in Northern Territory labelled a costly plan ‘for a climate catastrophe’

The Morrison government has been accused of embarking on an “expensive plan for a climate catastrophe” after it announced it would pay the gas industry up to $50m to speed up exploration in the Northern Territory.

The commitment, revealed on Thursday, also prompted warnings that taxpayers’ money could flow offshore to companies linked to tax havens and a Russian oligarch.

Related: Putin’s blacklisted oligarch ally to cash in from Morrison government’s gas-led recovery

Related: Scott Morrison’s ‘gas-led recovery’: what is it and will it really make energy cheaper?

Related: Benefits of Coalition’s ‘gas-led recovery’ overstated and declining usage inevitable, report finds

Related: Spinning emissions: Australia’s climate projections are not what they seem

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