When Annastacia Palaszczuk’s Labor government gave Adani the tick of approval last week they not only endorsed the future of the fossil-fuel industry in their state;, they also told the world that the Queensland Labor government are Climate Change denialists.
They told the world that they are a government that doesn’t back science, or facts, but self-interest and corporate greed. Well they believe some science – the science of the Adani company’s groundwater plan that sealed the approval. They don’t believe the science of carbon emissions and our imminent environmental apocalypse. Go figure.
All science is equal but you know, some science is more equal than others… especially if that science gets you re-elected. Qld Labor has redefined democracy once and for all as a ‘management of the people for the corporations’. After all, who’s going to fund their election campaigns if they piss off Murdoch and the coal barons? A bunch of hairy hippies? The traditional owners – the Wangan and Jagalingou people? The coalition of free-range organic egg producers?
No way. Corporate governments NEED corporate backing. Annastacia told the world they are prepared to use your children, and your children’s children, as the canaries in the coal mine. It’s not just the southern black-throated finch that is endangered; it’s our kids. It’s our country. It’s the fucking planet.
If the Labor government doesn’t believe the science of climate change then what hope do we as Australians have to meet the renewable targets we committed to as part of the Paris Agreement? Our own PM took coal into Parliament saying, ‘Don’t be afraid, don’t be scared, it won’t hurt you. It’s Coal.’ This was him ridiculing renewables.
The stunt wasn’t even original. He was mimicking US oil lobbyist and climate-change denier Jim Inhofe, who brought a snowball into the Senate chamber to prove the climate-change hoax. That was 2015. Our corporate Yes man pulled out his coal in 2017. Different idiots, same script. We’re currently on track to miss our climate targets for 2030 as our emissions continue to soar.
Federal government websites for the Department of the Environment and Energy are boasting we’re on track to beat our 2020 target. Really? With Adani approved and six more mines in Queensland pending?
Other more progressive world governments who actually give a shit about the future are engaged in low-carbon transition plans. The Scottish government has a target of generating 100 per cent of electricity from renewables by next year. In fact 28 of the EU countries agreed to a cumulative 20 per cent of energy coming from renewables by 2020 with Sweden hitting 40 per cent back in 2004. The UK has pledged 15 per cent by next year. And here in Australia with the most sun, the most wind, and the most empty expanse of landscape where we could establish solar and wind farms with tens of thousands of more jobs than fossil fuels would ever create – we’re still approving coal mines.
It’s clear to me that this decision had nothing to do with fact. It was about belief. And so many Australians have been brainwashed into believing the corporate spin because they’d rather hate ‘lefties’ than join forces with them. Those fighting on the environmental front aren’t lefties. They are the true conservatives – conserving the planet and its resources for future use. Ripping out coal and destroying ancient aquifers – I’d say that’s radicalised behaviour.
We all know the facts about Adani, about the mythical ‘jobs’, about the fact that it will be one of the most automated mines in the world, about the impact on the water table in the Galilee Basin, about the impact on the Barrier Reef putting 160k+ actual jobs at risk. There’s no point arguing fact, because in politics facts don’t win.
What is the most sickening is that Annastacia Palaszczuk and her government know exactly what they’ve done. They know the devastating impacts of this coal mine. But self-interest reigns supreme. Just say the word jobs and the deal is done. Local communities brought to their knees. These ‘jobs’ are the chicken-pox blankets colonials gave the world’s indigenous populations.
The next job boom will be pulling dead bodies out of collapsed buildings after a cataclysmic weather event. Or piling up old people after a 50-degree heatwave. Let’s change the signs at the Border from ‘Welcome to the Sunshine State’ to ‘Welcome to the Climate-Denial State’.
I was born in Queensland. My family lives in Queensland. I still have many, many dear friends in Queensland, but I think we have to cut the cord. I think we found out why Queensland drivers can’t merge – even with a Labor government, they can’t get out of the right lane. I’m sorry, but as a protest for our planet and the future of our kids, it’s time to boycott Queensland. Sorry, Mum.