The Australian government has given the green light to the first new coal mine since its election.
This mine will be built close to Moranbah and is projected to generate 2.5 million tonnes of coal during a five-year period.
It has faced heavy criticism for the decision, with the Australia Institute estimating that the endeavour will produce seven million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions during its lifetime.
A spokesperson on behalf of Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek said: “The Albanese government has to make decisions in accordance with the facts and the national environment law. That’s what happens on every project and that’s what’s happened here.”
Coking coal for steelmaking will be produced at the Isaac River coal mine.
The Albanese government made climate action a key pillar in its election campaign and has even made Australia’s emissions target more ambitious since coming to power – reducing emissions by 43% by 2030.
However, the decision to back the new coal mine has been viewed by many as a step in the wrong direction.
The Australia Institute stated: “In 2021-22, Australia produced 422 million tonnes of coal. That results in 1.1 billion tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions in just one year.
“The Federal Environment Minister, Tanya Plibersek, could say no to these projects. Ask Tanya Plibersek to stop approving new coal mines.”
A petition has been made available on its website to fight against the decision.