The National Archives of Australia today released selected federal cabinet records for 1990 and 1991. They reveal intense battles over Australia's domestic climate targets and, above all, a palpable determination that Australia not damage its coal revenue.
Australia's failure to reassess its commitment to coal will have serious negative consequences, not only for Australia’s economy, but for the health and well being of millions of people and the global environment.
For more than a decade the coal industry's favoured response to climate change was carbon capture and storage, or CCS. CCS is still the main defence, but the absence of functioning projects is making it ever more threadbare.
A politician invites coal industry representatives to a celebration of their work at the New South Wales Parliament. The purpose? To push the message that coal is absolutely essential to our economy and wellbeing.
The controversial Shenhua Watermark coal mine in New South Wales recently cleared another hurdle along the way to being granted full approval to proceed. But there are major environmental risks which should still call the project into question.
Federal environment minister Greg Hunt has claimed that he had no choice but to approve Shenhua's controversial Watermark Coal Mine near Gunnedah in New South Wales. But the legislation suggests otherwise.