Rather than go back to a reliance on industries that are driving climate change, we have a chance to boost markets and jobs in clean industries.
In response to Resources Minister Keith Pitt’s comments backing new coal mines and the removal of environmental safeguards to spur the economic recovery, Australian Conservation Foundation CEO Kelly O’Shanassy said:
“The coronavirus pandemic has not erased the threat of climate change, so Australia still needs to move quickly to stop burning polluting fuels like coal, oil and gas.
“Rather than go back to a reliance on industries that are driving climate change, we have a chance to boost markets and jobs in clean industries.
“Mining thermal coal in the Galilee Basin or building new coal-fired power plants is the opposite of bouncing forward out of this crisis. It would bounce us right back into the midst of our climate change problems.
“Runaway climate change is a disaster for jobs. Anyone who supports investing in more coal and gas has their head in the sands of climate denial. Clean industries are where we will find abundant jobs and economic wealth.
“With so many of Australia’s forests, rivers, wildlife and communities devastated by last summer’s bushfires, it’s time to strengthen our environment laws, not weaken them, to protect the incredible places and animals we all love.
“A strong economy depends on a healthy environment. We can have both by protecting nature and our climate, or neither if we destroy them.”