Adani’s celebration of the first load of coal from its controversial Carmichael mine makes a mockery of Australia’s commitment to ‘phase down’ coal, the Australian Conservation Foundation said today.
Australia, along with nearly 200 other countries, made the historic pledge at the COP26 summit last month.
“The world has agreed to phase down coal, yet here in Australia, Adani and our governments are trying to phase it up,” climate campaign manager Gavan McFadzean said.
“The federal and Queensland governments have gone to great lengths to help Adani, but even so there are big question marks over the long term viability of this project.
“No bank is prepared to fund the Carmichael mine, instead Adani’s parent company is coughing up the finance.
“With the world turning its back on coal, the future of this mine remains uncertain,” he said.
In May the Federal Court put a halt to Adani’s plan to take 12.5 billion litres of water from Queensland’s Suttor River to service the mine.
“Without that water, it’s hard to see how Adani has enough resources to operate a coal mine,” Mr McFadzean said.
“Australia’s biggest ever climate poll, conducted by YouGov this year, found a majority of voters in every federal electorate – including the Queensland seats of Flynn, Maranoa, Kennedy and Dawson – do not see coal and gas as part of Australia’s energy future.”
Analysis by Accenture, released in October, shows Australia could have 395,000 new jobs and generate $89 billion in new trade by 2040 through investment in clean exports.
“Australia can replace and grow the revenue and jobs we currently get from coal and gas exports with clean exports,” Mr McFadzean said.
“Burning coal is warming our planet to dangerous levels. New coal mines that make that problem worse are not cause for celebration.”
Adani (now called Bravus) has a poor environmental record, with the company exceeding the permitted pollution discharge limit at its Abbot Point coal port by more than 800% and clearing koala habitat and black-throated finch habitat at the Carmichael mine site.