How Big Coal bought a government and trashed the environment

Coal Comfort 4 FINAL (2)

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Adani’s proposed Carmichael coal mine in the Galilee Basin, Queensland, is experiencing divestment from big banks, a strong message of caution from the Australian Federal Court and concerted pressure from environmental groups and traditional owners to stop its development.

But Carmichael is only one of many new coal mines planned or in process in Queensland. While federal and state governments continue to tie themselves into these dirty projects, many sectors of society are registering the problems with coal – from exploration to exportation, to exploitation, pollution and depletion.

Join us to hear about the social, environmental and political issues of coal, reaching from your backyard to global politics and back again. Is coal good for democracy?

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4 thoughts on “How Big Coal bought a government and trashed the environment

  1. Kiribati on Climate Change says:

    Kiribati, one of the Pacific’s lowest lying island nations, has urged Australia and New Zealand to show they are ‘real friends” by supporting strong action on climate change at a regional summit.

    Kiribati president Anote Tong made the call at the Pacific Islands Forum — which started in Port Moresby on Monday — where Pacific nations have gathered to form a united position to take to the Paris COP21 meeting in December.

    “What we are talking about is survival, it’s not about economic development… it’s not politics, it’s survival,” Mr Tong said.

    Mr Tong said Australia and New Zealand should use their relative regional power to advocate for smaller countries.

    “I think they need to come to the party, if they really are our friends then they should be looking after our future as well,” he said.

    Kiribati, with its population of 110,000 spread across 33 low-lying islands, is particularly vulnerable to climate change.

    Last year, the Kiribati government purchased 20 square kilometres of land in Fiji as a back-up plan for food security and possibly even relocation of its citizens.

    Media player: “Space” to play, “M” to mute, “left” and “right” to seek.
    Video: Pacific Islands Forum’s secretary general Dame Meg Taylor discusses this week’s gathering in Port Moresby. (The World)

    The week-long Pacific Islands Forum kicked off with a meeting of a bloc of seven small island states — Cook Islands, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Nauru, Niue, Palau and Tuvalu.

    The Pacific Islands Forum’s secretary general Dame Meg Taylor told the ABC’s The World program that “it would be good to see that we come closer with the two OECD members [Australia and New Zealand] situated in the Pacific”.

    “They are members of the Pacific Islands Forum, but they are also developed economies [so] issues for them are different to those in the rest of the Pacific,” she said.

    Prime Minister Tony Abbott will travel to Port Moresby on Wednesday and will take part in the main Pacific Islands Forum leaders retreat on Thursday.

    A climate change declaration in Suva last week — at a rival regional forum that does not include Australia and New Zealand — signalled what Pacific countries would likely bring to the negotiating table.

    “The two big brothers of the Pacific have largely ignored their neighbours’ calls … to meet the challenges of climate change.” — Oxfam Australia chief executive, Helen Szoke

    The Suva declaration included a call to limit global temperature increases to 1.5 degrees Celsius, saying the current goal of 2 degrees above the pre-industrial level would push many beyond their ability to adapt.

    Oxfam Australia said there has been frustration amongst some Pacific island nations that Australia and New Zealand haven’t taken a stronger position on climate change in the past.

    “The two big brothers of the Pacific have largely ignored their neighbours’ calls for stronger emissions reduction targets and greater support to meet the challenges of climate change,” said Dr Helen Szoke, Oxfam Australia’s chief executive.

    “The question remains whether Australia will do the right thing by the Pacific and ensure the leaders meeting sends the strongest possible signal ahead of Paris, or whether together with New Zealand, it will use its influence in the Forum to weaken any outcomes,” Dr Szoke said.

    The Pacific Island Forum will also discuss alleged human rights abuses in the West Papua and Papua provinces of Indonesia, fisheries, information and communication technology and cervical cancer.

    — ABC News Report

  2. Yes Minister says:

    Personally I think the Pacific Islands nations are deluded if they think the big-eared wabbott will take any notice of their plight. That knuckle-dragging neanderthal is only interested in promoting the financial interests of his mates at the big end of town, including the coal industry. With this in mind, global warming and sea level rising are non-events where politicians (regardless of affiliation) are concerned.

  3. The Masked Avenger says:

    Actually there might just be a chance for Kiribati and the other islands now that it appears the Mad Monk and his ignorant cohort Duttion are likely to deposed after the Canning by-election. While Turnbull is hardly the great white hope, he would (will??) undoubtedly be more enlightened than most of the facists

    1. Abbott does'nt like Monday's says:

      Thanks, o masked one, for your comment on the 5th Australian PM in five years…

      On his way from the Liberal party room on Monday night, the mad Monk could be heard mumbling these words:

      No, it ain't so neat to admit defeat.
      They can see no reasons
      'Cause there are no reasons
      What reason do you need to be shown?
      Tell me why?
      I don't like Mondays.
      I really want to shoot
      The whole day down

      Maybe the Libs prefer Turnbull because he is a better bullshit artist than Abbott?

      editor wbt
      (with thnx to julio and the Boomtown rats)

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