Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek’s indication that she will approve the Isaac River metallurgical coal mine in Queensland’s Bowen Basin is a bad decision that flies in the face of the accepted science on global warming.

The Australian Conservation Foundation said the decision – which would be the Albanese government’s first approval of a new coal mine – runs contrary to climate science.

“The UNFCCC, the International Energy Agency and the world’s climate scientists have all been crystal clear for years that we must immediately stop digging up and burning coal if we want a safe climate,” said ACF’s climate change program manager Gavan McFadzean.

“We commend the Albanese government’s increased ambition to replace coal with renewables for our domestic energy system, but as far as the climate is concerned that good work is undone every time a new coal or gas project for export is approved.

“Wherever in the world our coal and gas is burnt, it makes climate damage in Australia worse. More flooding, longer heatwaves, worse bushfires.

“The government is reforming our environment laws. Changes should explicitly embed the consideration of the damage caused by coal and gas emissions in every assessment.”

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