With new fossil fuel corporations finding it increasingly difficult to find the finance, the Scott Morrison government has come to the rescue with public subsidies. Margaret Gleeson reports.
Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility
Two protesters from Front Line Action on Coal blocked Aurizon’s coal railway near Bowen for five hours on January 9, calling on the Queensland government to rule out funding for Aurizon.
They prevented any coal trains getting to Adani’s Abbot Point coal terminal by locking their arms inside a steel barrel filled with concrete on the train tracks.
The Queensland Labor government is currently considering rail operator Aurizon’s bid for a Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility loan to build a rail link between Adani’s Carmichael coalmine and the terminal.
As the decision deadline looms for the $1 billion Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) loan to Adani for construction of rail infrastructure for the Galilee Basin mega coalmine, a rash of protests erupted in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Townsville, Cairns, Mackay and at Adani’s work sites near Belyando in Central Queensland.
The future of Adani’s proposed Carmichael mine in the Galilee Basin has become intertwined with the Queensland state elections called for November 25, with the mega coalmine confronting serious problems in obtaining finance for the project.
Over the past year, Adani has been increasingly unable to secure the $5 billion it needs from private sources, as various financial institutions have begun shifting investments away from coal and towards renewables.
Under pressure from grassroots campaigns, Australia’s Big Four banks have ruled out financing the project.
The Adani company claims that a final decision to invest in the Carmichael coal mine has been made. However, campaigners have dismissed this announcement as a stunt and vowed the mine will never come into production.
Blair Palese of 350 Australia wrote to supporters on June 6: "We want to tell [Adani] that we are more committed than ever to STOP this project and ensure that sanity prevails by making sure this climate bomb never sees the light of day."