IPC considers linking coal export to Paris Agreement
The Independent Planning Commission has called for public comment on a condition it is considering in relation to the proposed United Wambo open-cut coal mine at Singleton in the Hunter Valley.
9 August 2019
The condition would require the mine’s proponent to prepare an export management plan limiting the sale of coal from the mine to countries with policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in line with the Paris Agreement.
EDO NSW is considering the legal validity of such a condition on behalf of our client, the Hunter Environment Lobby, and will provide a full response to the IPC.
This week, David Morris, EDO NSW CEO, responded to media interest by stating that the condition would "set a dangerous precedent and does not sit comfortably with the commission's obligation to consider the public interest". The Rocky Hill decision of February 2019 made clear that rapid and deep reductions in Australia’s contribution to greenhouse gas emissions are required immediately.
David Morris also outlined how “the proposed condition is fundamentally flawed because it is underpinned by two factual inaccuracies.
“Many countries that have signed the Paris Agreement, on current trajectories, will fail to achieve their existing commitments. Even if all signatories did meet their existing commitments, the world will warm far more than the goal set in Paris to limit the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 degrees. That is, despite the fact that most countries are signatories to, and have ratified, the Paris Agreement, there remains a huge disconnect between countries’ Paris Commitments and achieving the Goals of the Paris Agreement.
“The proposed condition will do very little to change the business-as-usual approach to the mitigation of emissions from coal exports.”
The condition is open for comments until 5pm on Friday 9 August 2019.
For more information, see:
- Newcastle Herald: The NSW Independent Planning Commission charts new ground with United Wambo expansion plan
- The Guardian: Glencore mine could be forced to see coal only to Paris agreement signatories