Oxfam Report Slams Australia’s Commitment To Coal

famine africa

Dr Helen Szoke who is chief executive of Oxfam Australia says a recently completed report titled “More Coal Equals More Poverty” has shown than Australia’s present position on coal was fundamentally at odds with global climate change and the transition to renewable energy. Dr Szoke says the failure by the Federal Government to restrain Australia’s carbon pollution and its obstinate desire to expand the country’s coal exports continues despite there being overwhelming evidence that carbon emissions from coal are putting communities in Australia and all over the world at risk of harm.

Causes human misery

She adds the real cost of burning more coal will be measured by how much more poverty it will cause through the escalating impact of climate change and humanitarian disasters. Dr Szoke says Australia must stop hanging on to dated technologies and instead contribute towards bringing an end to the fossil fuel era. What that means is there should be no new commitments to coal mines such as the Adani mega mine. The country should also rule out public funding for new coal infrastructure. It also means Australia must also phase out coal rapidly from its own electricity supply.

Coal cannot deliver

Dr Szoke says that coal simply cannot meet the energy needs of the world’s poor people.  She adds that for millions of families including Australia’s neighbours in the Pacific, climate change is far from being a far of threat and is instead a real and present danger that is already costing lives. The report by Oxfam draws attention to the dramatic increase in the use of renewable energy plans of India and China.

 “China has suspended more than 100 planned or partly constructed coal-fired power plants and plans to invest more than $493 billion in renewables through to 2020,” Dr Szoke said. “India’s latest National Energy Plan projects it will reach 275GW of renewable energy capacity by 2027 and will have no need to begin constructing new coal-fired power plants over the next decade.”

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