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Queensland Labor must not approve new thermal coal mining at Acland Stage 3

Greens MP Michael Berkman has responded to reports today that the Queensland Labor Cabinet will soon approve the Stage 3 expansion of the Acland coal mine near Oakey on the Darling Downs. 

“New thermal coal mines and expansions are dangerous, and they will kill Queenslanders, full stop. 

“The climate breakdown is already making droughts, bushfires and flooding worse, and 11,000 scientists have just warned of “untold suffering” and a threat to the future of humanity if we don’t stop digging up coal for energy. 

“Instead of approving dangerous new mining, Labor should immediately launch a transition and prosperity package for Oakey and the Darling Downs. 

“Let’s use this as an example of how to build a transition beyond fossil fuels that actually looks after workers and communities. 

“The State government should fund a package to make sure every single coal worker at the mine is offered decent job or retraining to build social housing, public infrastructure and clean energy. 

“Instead, Labor is rewarding bad behaviour by this big coal company. The Department of Environment is still investigating possible illegal mining under the mine’s Stage 2 approval, but they seem ready to approve Stage 3.

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