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Queensland State Election and Coal

Written By: - Date published: 10:22 am, November 22nd, 2017 - 9 comments
Categories: australian politics, climate change, Environment, global warming, International, Mining, sustainability - Tags: , ,

The Queensland election is turning into one of those rare and weird ones in which a large-scale environment-versus-economy fight looms largest.

They go to the polls on November 27th. There’s around 200,000 New Zealanders in Queensland, with plenty more who used to be.

At stake is whether a seriously massive coal mine and rail and port goes ahead.

Labor will veto any Federal loan to the development proposer, Adani. Adani are an Indian company seeking to build a seriously massive cola mine and rail and port, and they need lots and lots of state support to make it happen.

LNP want this coal mine to proceed, and they want it real bad, plus they want more dams.

There’s been plenty written already on what that amount of coal released might mean for the survival of the entire Great Barrier Reef.

The LNP, not to be outdone on the policy front, are promising free off-peak travel for seniors on public transport. So it looks like they’re learning from Winston!

The Liberal Party aren’t doing great, but One Nation is surging.

In Logan, One Nation has a former world champion kickboxer and Hells Angel against Labor’s Linus Power. It’s really tight.

In Rockhampton, ex-Labor now Independent Margaret Strelow is splitting the progressive vote down, and it will be all down to the preferences there.

In Mundingburra, simply too close to call Labor v LNP.

In Gold Coast’s Bonney seat, it will come down to the Green preferences since there’s no One Nation candidate.

The Sunshine Coast’s Glass House seat has both One Nation and Green minorities reasonably strong, so again it’s totally down to where the preferences flow.

Further electoral analysis is here.

Just in case you think this is easy for us to laugh from the luxury of hydro-and-geothermal-powered New Zealand, Australia generates three quarters of its electricity from coal. Last week in Bonn and the big climate talks, Australia specifically refused to sign the pledge against mining and burning coal. Only iron ore brings more export income to Australia than coal. Think about that.

If Labor loses, the Carmichael mine will produce 60 million tonnes of coal a year from six open-cut pits and as many as five underground mines, over 60 years. Plus it unlocks the entire Galilee Basin.

If, as is possible, One Nation hold the balance of power in the Queensland Parliament, we are in for the kind of politics that we are more familiar with in Austria, the Netherlands, and Poland.

It’s too close to call, and there’s a lot riding on the Queensland state election.

9 comments on “Queensland State Election and Coal”

  1. Ad 1

    …massive coal mine and rail and port…” excuse me.

    [Amended – MS]

  2. patricia bremner 2

    We have an issue here in NZ with an open cast mine almost promised by National, could be blocked as it is partly on conservation land, and we have joined 19 countries to promise no more coal mines.

    • Koff 2.1

      You’re right Patricia. The decision by the West Coast Regional Council to give resource consent to the open coal mine Mt Te Kuha coal mine has hardly surfaced here as an issue yet. The mine will swallow up 13 ha of DOC land. Not exactly Adani sized, but we don’t need it and shouldn’t allow it to go ahead on climate change grounds.

      http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/344381/west-coast-mining-project-given-green-light

      There was an announcement at the recent climate change meeting in Germany which James Shaw attended about the Powering Past Coal Alliance headed by the U.K. and Canada, but which N.Z. has joined (of course no news here in N.Z. MSM too busy gossiping instead about nothing).

      Click to access powering-past-coal-alliance.pdf

      It would be an awkward contradiction to join an anti coal alliance and then allow an open cast coal mine to go ahead! Expect Action Station and Greenpeace will take this up. Would hope the Greens now in Parliament will be pro active as well.

  3. Macro 3

    The backing of Adani has to be one of the stupidest political gambles by any political party in recent times. One Nation and the LNP are obviously chasing the “red neck” vote – and unfortunately there are a fair few of them in Oz. But it is a foolish move, not only from a climate change point of view, but also from a fundamental economic viewpoint as well. Unfortunately for Oz, with such a massive part of its economy based on coal, Oz is in for a massive downturn in the not to distant future, and it is already happening, (a bit like the collapse of the british mining industry under the Thatcher regime). They may have massive amounts of the black stuff sitting in the ground, but the world’s energy demand is no longer looking at coal to supply it. Furthermore, hoping that Adani is the saviour is highly foolish as well. Adani may have a huge international presence – but it is fundamentally weak, and is presently under investigation in India for corruption and financial crime. For the Oz govt to then lend $1b to this company to build a railway has to be the height of stupidity – a bit like sending sheep to the Saudi desert, only more so.

  4. ThatcherForEver 4

    The only reason the Qld Labour Party are not supporting the Adani Federal Loan application is because the partner to the Labour Premier worked for Adani prepared the application.
    As for Kiwi’s in Qld, many work in the Mines in the Central Queensland Highlands and will want to see the mine proceed. Regardless of party affiliation, this mine will proceed.
    Regarding your comments about the politics of Qld; they simply mirror the Australian System where both parties are mired in internal scandals and they both reflect the racist red neck who is your typical Aussie.

    • RedLogix 4.1

      Never mind all your Aussie ‘racist rednecks’ who’ve strongly protested this mine…. turns out:

      The Adani Group is close to securing finance for its controversial coal mine and railway project in outback Queensland, with an announcement expected in coming weeks that Chinese state-owned enterprises, banks, and export credit agencies are backing the venture.

      Australian taxpayers may be let off the hook under the deal, which could mean Adani no longer requires an Australian Government-subsidised loan of up to $1 billion for the railway it needs to transport the coal to port.

      But China’s money will come at the cost of local jobs.

      Chinese enterprises and export credit agencies invariably require that materials for key infrastructure are sourced from China, effectively shifting work out of Australia and undermining Adani’s claims its project will create many thousands of additional jobs for Queensland.

      http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-11-22/china-will-finance-adani-mine-insiders-say/9177470

      Isn’t that a good thing!, Now it not ‘racist redneck’ Aussies funding it, the whole project is sweet. Even the coal will be clean!

  5. Philj 5

    Currently in Pauline Hansen country, and the LNP, (Torry party) are offering to put money into sports clubs, roads, mining, jobs. The Leader, Tim, did admit on TV that they had learnt valuable lessons from their last term in Govt selling off public assets, downsizing of public services etc etc. The public I talk to are sick of the lot of them. They have a new preferential system of voting which is confusing the public. Interesting to observe the lucky country beginning to heat up. Warmest weather in some parts for 155 years. I also heard for the first time, on Sky TV, the term for folk concerned about coal mining, as ‘Warmists’. Amazing.

  6. Ad 6

    A Sky News/ReachTel poll of Queensland voters released Tuesday had Labor leading the LNP 34 percent to 30 percent and One Nation on 17 percent of the primary vote.

    LNP will do the deal with the Devil if it can.

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