Australia Institute Launches Coal Mine Campaign
18 August 2015 at 10:50 am
One of Australia’s most influential think tanks has launched a new international campaign against coal mines.
Chief Economist of The Australia Institute, Richard Denniss, wrote to supporters yesterday to outline a new plan to tackle a growing coal trade.
Denniss said that the world needed to oppose new coal mines if it was serious about fighting climate change.
“There is no room for more coal mines in a world economy that is tackling climate change,” Denniss said.
“Put simply, if Australia succeeds in its coal export ambitions, the world will fail in its efforts to tackle global warming.
“That is why The Australia Institute has launched the No New Coal Mines initiative, including a petition to the President of France asking him to put coal exports on the agenda for Paris.”
It is the first campaign that Denniss has announced since he stood down as Executive Director in July.
Denniss said he would be immediately travelling to London take his campaign to the world stage.
“Today I am heading off to London to ensure that the world understands the scale and significance of Australia's coal export ambitions and that our Prime Minister believes that Australia's 'contribution' to tackling climate change involves building enormous new coal mines,” he said.
“Next Wednesday I will be presenting the research that backs up the call for no new coal mines at Sir Nicholas Stern's research centre, The Grantham Institute, at the London School of Economics.
“While the scientific case for a moratorium on new coal mines is obvious, the economic case is actually quite startling.
“Our research also shows preventing new mines from going ahead would be beneficial to the economy.
“In the coming months I will be presenting The Australia Institute's research all around the world.”
Last week Prime Minister Tony Abbott announced that Australia would reduce greenhouse gas emissions so they are 26-28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.
“This is a responsible and achievable target. It is comparable to the targets of other developed countries and allows our economy and jobs to grow strongly,” Abbott said.
“The target builds on Australia’s excellent record. We met and beat our first Kyoto target and expect to do the same in 2020 through the Government’s Direct Action plan.
“Australia is making a strong and credible contribution to the international effort to tackle climate change.”
Climate Change Authority Chair and former Governor of the Reserve Bank, Bernie Fraser, disputed Abbott’s claims and said Australia was setting targets well behind other countries and coalitions like Switzerland, the USA, the European Union and Canada.