March 11, 2015

Nothing “sustainable” about new Abbot Point Expansion Plan

Sydney, 11th March: Australia refutes QLD Labor’s assertion that they can construct the Abbot Point coal port “sustainably” by not dumping Reef dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef and Caley Valley wetlands.

Responding to the proposal announced today by Premier to relocate the dumping of Reef dredge spoil to Terminal 2 at Abbot Point, Australia CEO Blair Palese said: “Nothing about building the world’s largest coal port to unlock mega coal mines is sustainable – not environmentally and not financially.”

“Adani’s port expansion will provide a gateway to unlock 9 mega coal mines in the Galilee Basin, whose carbon reserves account for six percent of the carbon necessary to take the planet past the 2-degree red line set by the world’s governments. This is literally a ticking carbon time bomb.”

“There’s only one way for this coal to be exported and that’s right through the Great Barrier Reef. The ALP’s proposal still allows dredging near the Reef and will see a major rise in shipping across the Reef’s waters. We also know that climate change, which will be exacerbated by the new Galilee coal mines, is one of the greatest challenges facing the Reef.”

Adani, lead proponent of the ports and mines, has an alarming record of environmental breaches in India and recent investigations have uncovered a murky corporate structure.

“No Government that purports to be committed to the Reef and environmental sustainability would be talking to Adani. Adani should not be allowed to operate in Australia and least of all in our precious Great Barrier Reef.

“Aside from the environmental risks, this project is also a walking financial nightmare. To date, Adani has only managed to raise a mere $1billion of the $16.5 billion they require.”

“Adani is desperately trying to convince anyone who’ll listen that they can build this project for billions of dollars less than we know is required. Meanwhile 9 global investment banks have ruled out involvement and the price of coal is at an all-time low. The chances of Adani raising the finances for this project are looking slimmer by the day, and so we face the ridiculous situation where we may be dredging the Reef for a mine that will never be built.”

“It is deeply concerning that the ALP is doing deals with Adani over a project that is completely flawed environmentally and financially, Palese concluded.

Media enquiries: Charlie Wood | 0427 485 233 |