Abbot Point Environmental Offsets Raise Concerns
- Business & Finance
News of Adani’s precarious financial position in The Financial Review calls into question how environmental conditions attached to the Abbot Point coal port expansion approval will be funded.
“It’s incredibly concerning that not only do the Abbot Point offsets appear impossible to achieve and are unlikely to be enforced but there might not even be the money to pay for them,” Senator Larissa Waters, Australian Greens environment spokesperson, said.
“Ludicrously, the Abbott Government approved the world’s largest coal port in the Great Barrier Reef saying that all of the damage would be offset even though internally the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority warned that would be unachievable.
“Just how the damage of dumping 5 million tonnes of dredge spoil into the Great Barrier Reef will be offset has not even been figured out yet. The project was approved without the offsets plan, which has still not been made public.
“What’s more, the Abbott Government is cutting more and more staff from the Environment Department so that it will have even less capacity to enforce compliance with environmental offsets.
“There’s no doubt that trying to offset the damage of dumping millions of tonnes of dredge sludge into a World Heritage Area would be incredibly expensive.
“But the Abbott Government has approved the coal port expansion without any guarantee that the money will be there to pay for the offsets, despite Adani’s track record of noncompliance with environmental conditions in India.
“Adani and GVK should release just how they plan to achieve the offsets and how they will pay for those offsets before proceeding any further with the Abbot Point project,” Senator Waters said.
Press Release, June 30, 2014