India's Adani wins green light for long delayed Australian coal mine

Credit: Reuters Studio
Published on June 13, 2019 - Duration: 01:40s

India's Adani wins green light for long delayed Australian coal mine

India's Adani Enterprises on Thursday (June 13) received the go-ahead to start construction of a controversial coal mine in outback Australia, after a state government approved a final permit on ground water management.

David Pollard reports.

India's Adani wins green light for long delayed Australian coal mine

After court battles and climate change protests comes the consent.

Adani of India has finally got the go-ahead for constructing its long-awaited but controversial Australian coal mine.

After the Queensland state parliament approved a final permit.

Though with the decision there also came a gentle warning.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) QUEENSLAND MINISTER FOR ENVIRONMENT AND THE GREAT BARRIER REEF, LEEANNE ENOCH SAYING: "Unfortunately, to date, Adani has not always engaged with The Department in the same constructive way that other major resources companies have done.

I hope that this is not an indication of how the company will approach their future obligations.

As with all projects the regulator will focus strongly on compliance ...." The Carmichael mine is slated to produce 8 to 10 million tonnes of thermal coal, mostly used for power generation, a year.

It'll cost around 1.5 billion dollars.

But at an extra environmental cost, its opponents say, that will be huge.

And which could threaten, they say, the World Heritage-listed Great barrier Reef off the Queensland coast.

For Adani's Australia boss, it's all systems go.

(SOUNDBITE) (English) ADANI AUSTRALIA MINING CHIEF EXECUTIVE LUCAS DOW, SAYING: "The construction period for the mine and rail project is essentially two years.

So ostensibly you can be thinking from today in two years' time people should be expecting we have exported our first piece of coal." Potentially, the approval paves the way for half a dozen new thermal mines to come on line in Australia.

That is if they're economic.

Thermal coal is increasingly being replaced by renewable energy sources.

A recent drop in prices means there are not just environmental concerns over whether the mines will be worth it.

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