Wednesday, 14 June 2017
Adani Carmichael Coalmine
That the Senate—
(a) congratulates the Federal Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, and the Queensland State Premier, for their leadership in bringing the Adani Carmichael coal mine in Queensland's Galilee Basin another step closer to being a reality;
(b) recognises the much-needed boost to employment in North Queensland generally, and in the resources sector specifically, that the Adani Carmichael mine will deliver;
(c) welcomes the positioning of Adani's Regional Headquarters in Townsville; and
(d) notes that road, rail and port infrastructure upgrades directly resulting from Adani's investment in the Galilee Basin will provide benefit to businesses and communities across Northern Australia.
This motion claims that Adani will boost employment in North Queensland—it will not. The jobs are a lie. They initially claimed 10,000 jobs but, in fact, under cross examination they have had to confess that it is much less than that; it is 1,646 jobs. What is more, those jobs are likely to kill the workers, given that we have got a resurgence of black lung in Queensland. Black lung is back in Queensland and coming to a coalmine worker near you.
On the flip side, we have 70,000 jobs on the reef, and we have lost half of the coral cover on the reef. We need to keep that coral to keep those jobs instead of the donations payback that has been delivered by both Labor and the Liberals to Adani and its coalmining mates. We should be investing in genuine job creation in the regions. The clean energy projects that are in the pipeline could deliver far more jobs than Adani ever will, and they will not kill the reef or its workers.
Labor will be supporting this motion, but we believe the project has to stack up environmentally. We believe regions in Queensland are crying out for this investment and we support the potential jobs that this project will create, but we do not support taxpayers' money being used—
Opposition senators interjecting—
on the railway line. It has to stand on its own two feet. Adani have stated that the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility loan is not needed as a prerequisite for the project to go ahead. Like so many important policy issues facing this nation, the government's intention in this area is completely hamstrung by their bungling of the issues on the ground.