On August 7, 15 of us met for an early coffee in Chifley Square. The purpose of the Galilee Blockade rendezvous was to alert the staff of Federation Asset Management (FAM) to a possible link with the Adani coal mine in Central Queensland.
FAM is a private equity fund that was established in 2018, with a major focus on renewable energy. Early this year, it invested in wind farm developer and operator, Windlab which wants to build a LakeLand Wind Farm project in Queensland.
One of the tenders for the wind farm project is the construction company, BMD Group, which mainly operates in Queensland.
BMD has one of the biggest projects with Adani, building the rail link into the Galilee Basin for $350 million. BMD is a family-owned company and is not listed on the stock exchange.
FAM promotes itself as an investor in companies that fit a “social” and “economic” need, adding that it will avoid investing in fossil fuel or nuclear power energy, toll roads, gas pipelines, armaments and militarism, alcohol, tobacco and gaming, live animal export and old-growth logging.
This is admirable, but accepting a tender from BMD, the largest Adani contractor in Australia, to build its Windlab farm, conflicts with FAM's stated objectives.
This was the reason for our visit to their offices.
The office worker took our flyer and then rang the CEO, who angrily confronted us in the foyer. A somewhat heated discussion followed.
The aftermath is that FAM and Windlab will formulate a response regarding working with BMD. Based on their stated policies, they recognise it requires an explanation. At least this is a beginning.