Courtesy: South Asia Times
Sydney, 6 December 2016 – The Turnbull government using taxpayer money for the Carmichael coal rail line is a train wreck of an idea, says Greenpeace Australia Pacific.
The Courier-Mail reported the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility has given conditional approval for up to $1bn in taxpayer funding for the North Galilee Basin Rail project that would exclusively service the Carmichael mine. During the election campaign, the Prime Minister said there would be no public funding for the Carmichael coal mine.
“This is a train wreck of an idea and it must be stopped. No more taxpayer money should be wasted on coal projects that threaten our Great Barrier Reef,” said Greenpeace Australia Pacific reef campaigner Shani Tager.
“Malcolm Turnbull already promised not to waste Australian taxpayers’ money on a project that could be a death sentence for the Great Barrier Reef. Now he’s tearing up that promise at a time when the Great Barrier Reef is fighting for survival.
“While the world is moving away from coal, the federal government is looking at funding a project that some of the biggest banks in the world won’t go near and the Queensland Treasury has called unbankable. It’s absurd to prop up a project that banks won’t touch.
“It’s outrageous that two days after the government had to report to UNESCO on how it is protecting the Great Barrier Reef, it’s now throwing money at the Carmichael mine that would be disastrous for the reef’s health.”
Just last month the former chairperson and chief executive of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority called for a ban on new coal mines in order to conserve the health of the Great Barrier Reef.
If it ever got to full production, the 28,000ha Carmichael coal mine would put 121 million tons of greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere each year and ship 60 million tons of coal directly through the heart of the Great Barrier Reef.