To put this in perspective Queensland overall produces more than 95.7 million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions each year. Last year coal overtook iron ore as Australia’s biggest export. ", "Galilee Coal Basin:Carmichael – A Stranded Asset? Black coal consists of the higher rank anthracite, bituminous and sub-bituminous coals. "[37], In October 2017, Adani announced that Rockhampton and Townsville will both be used as bases for the expected labour, on a fly-in fly-out basis. [5] The Adani mine has been scaled back significantly from earlier plans and will now be smaller than other Queensland coal mines. [46] Former Prime Minister Tony Abbott cited the 10,000 jobs figure as evidence "this mine is good for the country". We have recently upgraded our technology platform. [70], In November 2018, Adani Australia announced the project would be 100% financed by Adani Group resources, with no government funding required. The Minister did not consider the much larger emissions associated with burning the coal from the mine. The coal produced by the Carmichael mine is high quality thermal coal, with a product specification of 5600Kcal and 11% ash, well above typical Indian or Indonesian coal, which has a weighted average value of 4,301–4,600 kcal/kg. [15], In May 2014, Queensland's Coordinator-General approved the project to proceed. Treasurer Jeff Seeney argued "The Queensland government, like governments across the world, have always provided some major incentives and the incentive we have decided to provide relates to infrastructure rather than the traditional handing out of grants. The industry took a major hit last year, however, when thermal coal prices experienced their biggest annual drop for more than a decade — plummeting from $101 in December, 2018, to $66 a year later. The project, known as the Carmichael mine, is controlled by the Adani Group, an Indian corporate behemoth headed by billionaire Gautam Adani. If built, Adani’s Carmichael mine will: Destroy the ancestral lands, waters and cultures of Indigenous people without their consent. Australia's government has given its approval for one of the world's biggest coal mines to be built by India's Adani Mining in Queensland. [109] Dr Justine Bell-James has criticised the market substitution defence as the "only significant barrier remaining to a successful climate change case". While Australia's mineable black coals range from Permian to Jurassic in age (280 to 150 million years old), most of Australia's black coal resources are of Permian age. [38], The news raised criticism due to the lack of transparency in the process, the councils' decision to invest in infrastructure outside its jurisdictions and the ownership of the new asset, which despite councils' financing may not be public. The largest black coal resources occur mainly in Queensland and New South Wales. It is the eighth-largest gold mine in the world, and had recoverable coal reserves of 591Mt in 2019. They contended: The Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) made a judicial review challenge under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) which was dismissed in 2016, followed by an appeal to the Full Court of the Federal Court of Australia. [108] ACF lost the appeal in 2017. However there are other ways of considering bigness. The Saraji coal mine was estimated to contain a total of 502Mt of recoverable coal reserves, including 442Mt of proven and 60Mt of probable coal reserves in 2019. [15] The mine site covers an area of 44,700 hectares (110,456 acres), around 447 square kilometres (173 sq mi), and is about 50 kilometres (31 mi) long. "[87], The emissions from burning the amount of coal expected to be produced from this one mine, whether sourced from it or elsewhere, would, in a "worst-case"scenario be, "approximately 0.53–0.56% of the carbon budget that remains after 2015 to have a likely chance of not exceeding 2 degrees warming...over at least 60 years... Approval of the Mine, therefore, could be either consistent or inconsistent with the goal of limiting warming to 2 degrees, depending on a range of external factors..." according to Doctor Chris Taylor and Associate Professor Malte Meinshausen. Are the days of combined cycle power plants numbered? [16], In July 2014, federal Minister for Environment, Greg Hunt, approved the mine to proceed after 36 conditions were stipulated. [16] 190 conditions were set by the state during both construction and operations phases of the mine with particular attention paid to groundwater and water bores which may be potentially affected. [32][33] Authorities suggested the line be financed by the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF),[34] though the Queensland provincial government rejected a funding request in November 2017. Some have encouraged customers to switch bank accounts and mortgages away from the large banks funding coal projects. ", This page was last edited on 8 December 2020, at 19:27. In August 2015, Commonwealth Bank announced that its advisory contract with Adani had ended,[58] nonetheless have not ruled out funding Adani and are viewed as the most likely local backer. [69] Most of the coal from the mine would be purchased by Adani in India. According to the Supplementary Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) submitted by Adani, "maximum impacts in excess of 300m are predicted" for the local water table. ", "Adani Mining CEO explains the $16.5B Carmichael coal mine", "Adani jobs explained: why there are new questions over Carmichael mine", "SBI to turn down Adani's $1 billion Australian loan request – sources", "SBI rejects report of scrapping $1 bn loan pact with Adani", "Eleven International Banks Rule Out Funding Adani's Coal Project", "Three French banks refuse to fund Adani project in Australia", "Standard Chartered backs off Adani coal mining project", "CommBank – Last bank standing on Adani? Australia is the biggest coal exporter in the world, having produced about 510 million tonnes (Mt) in 2017/18, of which about 75% was exported — making it the third-largest exporter of fossil fuels. [55] Banks ruling out funding include: Citigroup; JP Morgan Chase; Goldman Sachs; Deutsche Bank; Royal Bank of Scotland; HSBC; Barclays; BNP Paribas; Credit Agricole; Societe Generale; National Australia Bank. [35], In January 2020, in response to protests in Berlin by Extinction Rebellion, Siemens announced it would re-evaluate its $20m contract to supply signaling systems for the rail link,[36] but decided to continue with the contract saying there was "practically no legally and economically responsible way to unwind the contract without neglecting fiduciary duties. [28] The mine will take a total of 297 billion litres of water from underground aquifers. Estimates for the number of jobs to be created at the mine have steadily diminished from a high of 10,000 to a low of 1000: In December 2014, the CEO of Adani Mining was quoted as saying the mine would create 10,000 jobs. In November 2013 Morgan Stanley valued the mine at $0 and said "the company does not plan to spend money on developing the mine until coal prices rise from current levels". Therefore, the water trigger should be applied.". The environmental approval was approved which lasts for 99 years. Yancoal Australia Ltd (Yancoal) produces approximately 15.5 million tonnes of saleable (equity basis) thermal and metallurgical coal per annum for export into international markets. [22], By mid August 2015, Adani had ceased commercial relationships with a number of engineering contractors and banks. THEY say big things come in small packages, and this tiny creature could be the key to derailing the biggest coal mine in Australia. [29], The Carmichael River runs through the middle of the mine site. Australia’s largest coal mine The most notable feature of the new project is its sheer scale. [9] Greta Thunberg has drawn international attention to the mine. [3] The surface disturbance area is 27,892 hectares (68,923 acres). In early September 2014, the plan to dump dredge spoil in the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park area was scrapped. [92] Impacts on ground water were central to a case in the QLD Land Court, where Adani's expert witness defended inferences drawn from drilling data, against allegations that this was insufficient to determine risks of collapses underground that could impact groundwater systems. [42], In 2015, Environment Minister Greg Hunt announced federal approval for the project stating it would contribute $930 million to the Mackay region's GDP and $2.97 billion to the Queensland economy each year for the next 60 years. [78] This is the biggest open pit mine and is the largest gold producer in Australia. This followed competition to host the expected 2,000 jobs derived from the project construction stage. [89], In the wake of disastrous 2019–20 Australian bushfire season, Australia's climate policies, including the Carmichael mine, have become an ongoing topic of public discussion in Australia.[90]. However, by June 2019, the costs of solar power generation in India had decreased to the point that government subsidies might be required to make coal powered generation in India economically feasible. But as the world races to solve the climate crisis, mining giant Adani are trying to build the biggest coal mine in Australia's history in central Queensland. There have been a number of legal challenges to the project. [118], In June 2019 the government acknowledged that they had acted incorrectly in failing to properly consider the thousands of public submissions it received, and conceded the case, but did not address the question of whether it failed to correctly apply the water trigger. [3] Road access is made by the Gregory Developmental Road, an undeveloped section of the Gregory Highway. Response to Terms of Reference for Commonwealth Grants Commission 2015 Methodology Review", "Hey, big spender: why Campbell Newman loves his election hard-hat", "Gautam Adani says Queensland to co-invest in Australia project, govt defends SBI loan – Firstpost", "Rail line deal could cost taxpayers $1 billion-plus " Curtis Pitt MP ::: State Member for Mulgrave", "Adani underlines commitment to Galilee Basin coal mine plans", "Queensland Labor backs Adani's Carmichael coal project", "State won't say why it wants federal funding for coal project", "Government offers concessional loans for northern development", "Federal budget 2015: Northern Australia to receive $5 billion in infrastructure loans", "Frequently asked questions | Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility", "Abbott government hints Adani could be considered for rail funding", "Federal court asked to overturn Adani mine approval due to impact on Great Barrier Reef", "Adani Mining Pty Ltd v Land Services of Coast and Country Inc & Ors [2015] QLC 48", "Can the catastrophic fires bring some sanity to Australian climate politics? [54], In 2015, a number of major international banks publicly ruled out financing the Carmichael Mine and Rail Project, or the Abbot Point Coal Terminal on which the Carmichael project depends. Loy Yang mines a very thick seam of coal as can be seen in the image below. [19] As of 2015[update], the Palaszczuk Queensland Government proposed to dump dredge spoil on land within the terminal site. Its multi-seam, open-cut mine has been producing up to 10Mt a year of high-quality metallurgical coal for export markets since 1974 and is operated by BMA. Queensland Mining and Energy Bulletin (April 2019): Institute of Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility, Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, Environmental Defenders Office Queensland, "Adani on track for first Carmichael mine coal exports in 2021", "Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Project: Project Overview", "Adani's new mini version of its mega mine still faces some big hurdles", "Mineral Resources (Galilee Basin) Amendment Bill 2018", "Rural electrification in India: Galilee Basin coal versus decentralised renewable energy micro grids", "Largest coal mine in Australia: federal government gives Carmichael go-ahead", "Adani faces new hurdle over huge water plan in drought-ravaged Queensland", "Bau Australien: Greta Thunberg fordert Siemens zur Aufgabe von Kohle-Projekt auf", "Adani coalmine: Siemens CEO has 'empathy' for environment but refuses to quit contract", "Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Project declared 'significant project, "Adani Mining Pty Ltd – Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Project – Initial Advice Statement, 22 October 2010", "Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Project SEIS Volume 2 – Mine Studies", "Coordinator-General decides on Galilee Mine", "Carmichael coal mine means more jobs, less water for Queensland", "Abbott Point dredge dumping plans on the rocks", "Abbot Point port developers to ditch Great Barrier Reef seabed dumping pla", "$16 billion Carmichael coal mine approval set aside over 'technical matter, "Coalition will take six to eight weeks to revise its Carmichael coalmine approval", "Adani suspends two Australian coal project contractors: Report – Business Today", "Adani starts construction at Carmichael project", "Wangan and Jagalingou – Standing Our Ground", "Strictest conditions on Carmichael Coal Mine project", "Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Project SEIS- Report for Water Balance", "Adani, POSCO E&C sign pact to develop rail line in Australia", "Adani scales back Carmichael rail link plans", "$5 Billion Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility Cash For Mines", "Setback for Adani as Aurizon withdraws loan request for rail line", "Climate activists target Siemens over Australia coal project", "Germany's Siemens to fulfill Australia coal mine contract", "Carmichael mine FIFO workforce to come from Townsville, Rockhampton", "Queensland councils to pay at least $31m for Adani coalmine airstrip", "Queensland councils say they won't own Adani airport despite paying $34m", "$18.5 million proposed for Carmichael Airstrip will be used for shovel ready projects", "JOINT REPORT to the Land Court of Queensland on "Climate Change – Emissions", (2015) Adani Mining Pty Ltd (Adani) v Land Services of Coast and Country Inc & Ors", "Complaint lodged with ASX over Adani job claims for Carmichael mine", "PM:Stopping Adani mine 'bad for the country, "Adani Carmichael mine to create 1464 jobs, not 10,000", "Fact check: Will Adani's coal mine really boost employment by 10,000 jobs? [26], As of 2014[update] the mine planned to contain six open-cut pits and five underground mines. [17] It is required to return only 6% of this water in the first five years. [45] The company took out a television advertisement during the 2015 Queensland election including this claim. The multi-seam, open-cut mine has been producing up to ten million tonnes per annum of high-quality metallurgical coal for export markets since 1974. [57], Large coal projects in Australia typically engage with one or more of the ‘big four’ Australian banks in arranging or providing debt. [13] Since then proposal has gone through many changes. [61] In August 2017 the remaining bank Australia and New Zealand Banking Group distanced itself from Adani and announced a strategic shift away from coal. Peak Downs is currently Australia’s biggest coal mine (Credit: Flickr/Beyond Coal & Gas Image Library) It has been owned and operated by Australia’s biggest coal producer and exporter BHP Billiton Mitsubishi Alliance (BMA), a joint venture between BHP Billiton and Mitsubishi since 2001. Someone has to lose. [79] After Labor's election victory, the new Queensland Treasurer confirmed the government will not fund the rail line, but did not rule out other forms of support such as a royalty holiday. [100] The Group was represented by the Environmental Defenders Office of NSW. ", "SEIS Appendix 20 – Application to take water from the Belyando River", "Groundwater dominates discussion at Adani court case", "Environment – Queensland's Galilee Basin", "National recovery plan for the Black-throated finch southern subspecies (, "Adani: 2,000 hectares of black-throated finch habitat removed from conservation plans", "Adani mine 'spinning the roulette wheel' on survival of black-throated finch, researchers say", "Register of Indigenous Land Use Agreements Details", "Mackay Conservation Group challenges Adani mine in Federal Court", "Mackay Conservation Group v Commonwealth of Australia and Adani Mining", "Research Briefing: Adani's record of environmental destruction and non-compliance with regulations", "ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION AND BIODIVERSITY CONSERVATION ACT 1999 – SECT 139 Requirements for decisions about threatened species and endangered communities", "Federal Court overturns approval of Adani Carmichael coal mine in Queensland", "Federal Court intervenes over Adani 'lawfare, "Carmichael Coal Mine and Rail Coordinator General's Report", "LATEST ON THE CASE: Adani Carmichael coal mine objection | Edo QLD", "Why aren't Australia's environment laws preventing widespread land clearing? Yet Australian governments and multinational companies plan to double our coal exports, at a time when the world is gearing up to reduce global emissions. The largest coal mine in the world by reserves is the North Antelope Rochelle coal mine in the Powder River Basin of Wyoming, US. The open-pit mine was approved by the Queensland Government and the federal Australian governments. [80] in September 2015 Premier Palaszczuk said she was "absolutely committed" to the project going ahead and called for federal funding for the rail line. [117] The water trigger was added to the EPBC Act in 2013, after being introduced by then Federal New England MP Tony Windsor. It could be one of the biggest coal mines in the country once production begins, but it has so far been surrounded by controversy. 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