The LNP’s proposed new coal power plant will hurt the health of Queenslanders and impose enormous costs through climate change-related damage and dirtier air, new analysis by the

Australian Conservation Foundation’s (ACF) economic team reveals.

The report, The Real Cost of Coal, highlights the toll a new 800MW coal-fired power station in North Queensland will take on the Sunshine state, finding:  

  • Presuming the plant operates for 30 years it will cost $7 billion ($233.3 million a year) pollution related-disease, climate change and government subsidies;
  • Depending on design, the plant will cost Queensland tax-payers between $1.6 billion and $3 billion to build;

“Our research makes it clear that a new polluting coal fired power plant simply isn’t the solution to Queensland’s energy needs.” said Matt Rose, ACF economist.

“It is totally irresponsible to propose a project that causes so much climate pollution and damage to human health.

“Across Australia the annual health cost of coal-fired power stations is estimated to be $2.6 billion per year, of which almost $800 million of human damage occurs in Queensland.

“Coal hurts those who dig it up, those who transport it, and those who live near to where it is burned. Living within 50 kilometers of a coal-fired power station increases your risk of premature death by up to four times. Put simply coal kills people.

“And that’s before you factor in the impact of climate change, which is destroying the Great Barrier Reef and turbo charging the force of natural disasters like Cyclones Debbie and Yasi.

“To choose coal when clean energy alternatives are so much more affordable, and don’t hurt nature, cause climate pollution, or damage the health of Queenslanders, is a shocking decision.”

ACF Media Enquiries

Journalists with enquiries may contact Tom Arup on 0402 482 910, tom.arup@acf.org.au; or Toby Halligan on 0419 403 016, toby.halligan@acf.org.au For all other enquiries please call 1800 223 669 or email action@acf.org.au.