Chevron’s Australian LNG Facility Strike Cancelled

A general view of Chevron's Wheatstone LNG facility. Chevron/Handout via REUTERS
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Workers at the Woodside LNG facilities in Australia voted for industrial disputes on August 9th. Chevron and Woodside engaged in conversations with the union to prevent possible measures by the employees on August 10th. On August 11th, the Fair Work Commission, Australia’s labor regulator, allowed the workers’ union to hold a vote among employees to decide whether to take industrial action at Chevron’s Gorgon LNG facilities and the downstream Wheatstone LNG facilities. Negotiations between Chevron, Woodside Energy Group, and Australian unions were ongoing, but it was expected that results would only be produced in a few days, according to a source with knowledge of the matter on August 15th.

By August 24th, Woodside had reached a fundamental agreement with the unions to avert strikes. However, on August 25th, unions at Chevron’s LNG facilities warned that work interruptions could cost US energy exports billions if their demands for wages and working conditions were not met. On September 1st, Chevron workers refused a company salary and conditions offer, and by September 4th, mediation to avert strikes had resumed. Chevron workers announced plans for total strikes starting from September 14th if their demands were not met. The strikes began on September 8th, and on September 11th, Chevron stated that there was no reasonable prospect of reaching an agreement with the workers.

On September 21st, Chevron accepted the terms of a deal brokered by the Fair Work Commission to end the dispute. However, on September 22nd, the Australian Trade Union Alliance called for strikes on Chevron’s two major LNG projects after accepting proposals from the country’s industrial arbitrator to end long-running disputes over pay and conditions.

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