Carmichael Mine: implications

A huge coal mine is proposed by the Indian company (of ill repute) Adani in the yet-to-be-mined Galilee Basin in Queensland, Australia.

Climate change is a pending global disaster that only fools and those corrupted by short term profits could deny. This being so, what the world does not need is a new mega-coal mine.

This page was written 2017/12/17
Contact: email daveclarkecb@yahoo.com (David K. Clarke) – ©

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The future is with renewables, not coal.
Installations like this wind farm in Mid North South Australia are our future...
Wind turbine
Or like this solar farm in the Australian Capital Territory
Solar farm

A summary of the implications of the Carmichael mine

The Australian people don't want the Carmichael mine
Polling has shown that most Australians don't want the Carmichael mine. A ReachTel survey of almost 2,200 people across Australia, conducted in October 2017, found 55.6% of respondents opposed the mine going ahead. That was more than twice the number who supported the mine, with 18.4% of respondents saying they were “undecided”.

An independent survey by Research Now, of 1421 Australians and reported in the Sydney Morning Herald showed a very similar result.

However both the Queensland Labor government and, particularly the federal Liberal/National Coalition government, want the mine; apparently because of hoped-for short-term financial benefits.

Air pollution from the burning of coal kills millions of people each year.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has estimated that air pollution causes seven million human deaths each year; much of this air pollution comes from the burning of coal. The same WHO report stated that air pollution is the world's single biggest health hazard.

Coal from the Carmichael mine is intended for India and China, both of which have huge problems with air pollution.
Sri Lankan cricketers recently vomited during a game in New Deli because of air if India burns poor quality coal from Carmichael, air quality will only get worse.

Indian and Chinese cities have by far the most polluted air of any of the world's nations.

India to 'virtually eliminate' thermal coal imports
Adani stranded as wind tenders make another record; posted by Michael West, 2017/12/26. According to West, India's Coal Minister Piyush Goyal has said that he expects to virtually eliminate thermal coal imports into India in coming years. West wrote that "Last week, a 500MW wind tender in Gujarat was signed off at a record low price of Rs2.43/KWh, or $US38/MWh" and that solar power costs had fallen by 50% over the last two years. Renewables were now cheaper than coal; why would anyone build new, polluting coal-fired power stations when they could have clean power more cheaply?

Adani as a company has a very dubious and unethical record
as reported in the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's premier documentary program, Four Corners: The Dubious Dealings of India's Corporate Colossus.

There is very little chance the mine will ever be profitable
Studies have indicated that income from the mine will barely, if at all, cover costs. Michael West, Adjunct Associate Professor, School of Social and Political Sciences, University of Sydney, writing for The Conversation said that the project is "likely to lose billions of dollars when the only clear beneficiaries are the family of Indian billionaire Gautam Adani and his Caribbean tax havens."

The Carmichael mine, as an investment, is on the nose
Largely because of the dubious financial prospects of the Carmichael mine, mentioned above, many banks in Australia and overseas (particularly China, where big money is often available for mega-projects) have ruled-out funding the mine.

Joshua Robertson, writing in The Guardian in April 2017, reported that "Australia’s big four banks have all ruled out funding or withdrawn from Adani’s Queensland coal project". Later, December 2017, Peter Ryan, for the ABC, wrote an article headlined "Adani: Chinese banks not interested in financing Carmichael mine project". Ryan also stated that "Global banks, including Australia's major banks, have baulked at funding the Carmichael coal mine on concerns about its financial viability and the push towards renewable energy sources."

The mine will have a very short life
Either it will close down due to financial failure or it will be forced to close because of the realities of anthropogenic climate change. The available evidence is indicating that the coal industry itself has a very limited future.

The whole project goes against the Paris Accord
Australia has made commitments under the Paris Accord. If the mine goes ahead it will be almost impossible for the nation to honour those commitments. Australia's greenhouse emissions have increased every year since the Liberal/National government was elected in 2013, opening the Carmichael mine would just make this worse.

There will be very little in royalties from the mine for Queensland or Australia
Royalties are payments made by a mining company to a state in return for the privilege of taking minerals. The Queensland government has promised to defer royalty payments on the Carmichael mine for the first five years. This could cost Queensland tax-payers $253 million and the mine-life is unlikely to be longer than five years in any case.
This huge ugly thing is just the coal loading area of the Ulan mine in or near the Belong Valley of NSW.
Coal loading area

The climate change implications
If the Carmichael mine goes ahead at the planned scale it will result in millions of tonnes of additional greenhouse carbon dioxide going into the atmosphere every year.

There will be far fewer jobs than claimed
Adani, and the Queensland Premier, have claimed that the mine will lead to an additional 10,000 jobs, but the true figure, as admitted by an Adani representative, will be more like 1500 jobs.

It requires huge water consumption from the Great Artesian Basin
The government has given Adani a license to use an unlimited amount of water from the Great Artesian Basin. You don't have to be a mathematician to know that you can't take a additional unlimited amount of water from a basin that is already fully committed.

The same amount of money spent on renewables as would need to be spent to develop the Carmichael mine would probably create more jobs.
While opponents of renewable energy wail about the jobs lost in the fossil fuel industry when wind farms or solar power forces fossil fuelled power stations to shut down they never talk about the great many jobs being created in the renewable energy industry.

Huffington Post: May 2017; Anthony Sharwood quoted Professor Will Steffen of the Climate Council as saying "We did a study along with Ernst & Young based on the premise where Australia went to 50 percent renewables by 2030 [we're currently at about 14 percent] with no new fossil fuel projects. We found a net employment increase, and we're talking tens of thousands."

Punished for wanting a better future for our world and for future generations;
where is the justice in that?

Three years ago Alan Cuthbertson, a few other environmentally aware people and I walked from Melbourne to Canberra to raise awareness of the seriousness of climate change and to carry a petition to Federal Parliament asking for more urgent action to reduce emissions. It was Alan who organised the walk.

Just a few days ago Alan was involved in a peaceful demonstration against Adani's unethical Carmichael mine. Together with a few others who were also pressing for an end to this terrible proposal Alan was arrested. Alan was given a $400 fine and a criminal record for his commendable action.

Read Alan's story in his own words – Alan's newsletter.




Josh Robertson wrote an article for the ABC headlined "Adani parts ways with mining services company Downer over proposed Carmichael mine". This is a major setback for Adani; Downer's services were to be a key part in the mine's construction.
Stop Adani: Stopping Adani Coal is the Fight of Our Times.

Galilee Blockade

Huffington Post: The Damning Report That Says Adani's Carmichael Mine Is A Slow Train To Ruin, Bad for people's health, bad for the economy, bad for the reef, bad for everything. Anthony Sharwood, May 2017, writing about a report from the Climate Council.

Carmichael Coal Mine Cases in the Land Court and Supreme Court of Queensland

Australian Conservation Foundation: Stop Adani's Polluting coal mine

Catholic, Anglican bishops unite in opposition to Adani mega-mine: Sydney Morning Herald article by Nicole Hasham

Stop Adani Destroying our Land and Culture: Wangan and Jagalingou Family Council

Even One Nation Voters Overwhelmingly Oppose Adani's Carmichael Megamine: Huffington Post article by Anthony Sharwood

Adani stranded as wind tenders make another record, Posted by Michael West, 2017/12/26.

Climate change links

350.org: Stop Fossil Fuels; Build 100% Renewables

Lock the gate: No Gas mining on our prime agricultural land