I haven’t bothered to spend much time writing about the Abbott/Turnbull Government’s appalling inaction on climate change. That is not because I am not concerned about it. Just that it seemed obvious to anyone but a One Nation voter that global warming is a problem and our government is too beholden to the dirty power industry to do anything about it. But there have been a couple of recent developments I feel compelled to comment on.
After some questionable machinations to overcome some legal obstacles, the enormously unpopular Adani Coal Mine continues to inch inexorably towards a horrifying reality. While the project has the blessing of the complicit Queensland Labor government, it has also widely been reported this week that the federal government is set to approve a billion dollar loan of Commonwealth money to build infrastructure for the project.
Wait a minute. Why does Adani need a billion dollars of public money (and I have some doubts as to how much of this would end up being paid off too) to build a supposedly profitable coal mine? The government’s best argument for its continued aversion to renewable energy technology- and the one it most aggressively prosecutes- is that renewable technologies are not economically viable.
If it approves the loan, which will no doubt come with all manner of other assistance we haven’t even heard of, the government will make a mockery of these claims. In doing so it will demonstrate that the reason it continues to favour fossil fuel technology, despite the range of well-documented consequences, is because that is what its donor demand.
It will come as a surprise to few that the COALition is in thrall to the coal industry, but it is still surprising that they choose to show it so brazenly.