Tuesday, December 01, 2009

The future of coal

ABC radio did a segment a few weekends back on the future of the Australian coal industry, with a half dozen panelists from industry, unions, government, and other interested bodies. The link is here. Note that there is fine print a link to the transcript just above the comments section, if you prefer reading to listening.

Anyone wondering about the position of coal in the Australian economy should note that during last week's Emission Trading Scheme negotiations, there was a brief push to exempt ALL Australian coal from any greenhouse gas emissions program. Those negotiations have since broken down, as the opposition has ousted its leader in a no-confidence vote, appointed a new spokesman, and changed the official party position to one of obstruction and delay.

Under all currently proposed schemes, coal exports (which comprise about 3/4 of production) would be exempt.

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