Wills MP Peter Khalil states that Adani mine should not go ahead.

May 16, 2017 at 4:04 pm 8 comments

Moreland says Stop Adani 1 ReplyClimate Action Moreland, along with other concerned Moreland residents and groups, have been pushing our federal MP Peter Khalil (Wills) to oppose the Adani coal mine project. We invited him to our Moreland Says Stop Adani action on May 12 to address residents’ concerns. We made frequent attempts to contact him, but received no reply until an email today. The full text of this email is reproduced below.

We are pleased to report that Peter Khalil is now taking a stronger position against this project.

In previous correspondence he has stated that he opposes government funding for a rail line.  He now says:  “that given the environmental and commercial question marks I do not think this mine will go ahead, nor should go ahead, and that Coalition government should absolutely not be subsidising it with tax payer funds to the tune of $1 billion”. (emphasis added).

We hope that Peter Khalil will also be taking a strong stance in the Labor Party to change their policies to ensure they oppose the development of ALL new coal mines, including Adani. Currently the Labor Party in Queensland is strongly supporting the Adani project. Federal Labor leader Bill Shorten is in favour of the project “as long as it stacks up“, and is reportedly offering bipartisan support to Adani for amendments to the Native Title Act required for the project.

Full text of Peter Khalil’s reply – May 16, 2017

I note your invitation to the meeting outside Westpac Coburg. My apologies that I was unable to attend the event last Friday, I was tied up with constituent meetings. However my door is always open to meet with Climate Action Moreland.

I’m cognisant of the flurry of social media back and forth on the issue of the Adani Carmichael Coal Mine. I note that social media and twitter particularly are probably not the best platform to articulate complicated policy issues, however I will say that I am disappointed that after a number of meetings with you and your group, and public statements that I’ve made, I have seen social media that I am hiding from the issue.  That is a blatant misrepresentation of my position – given the number of meetings I have had with environmental groups, concerned individuals and the public statements I have made and the arguments I make internally.

To be precise – I’ve made it clear that given the evidence that the mine doesn’t stack up environmentally – insofar as it stands to damage the Great Barrier Reef and has other negative environmental impacts such as the increase in carbon emissions – AND it doesn’t stack up commercially as we’ve seen in the recent decision by Westpac and other major banks not to fund it, there should certainly not be a federal subsidy to the tune of $1 billion to provide a railway to help this go ahead.

This has been made clear by me time and time again, yet strangely enough in your communications you have misrepresented me by suggesting I support Adani. This could not be further from the truth.

I have stated clearly in the regular correspondence I have with concerned constituents, in public statements, in meetings with your group, that given the environmental and commercial question marks I do not think this mine will go ahead, nor should go ahead, and that Coalition government should absolutely not be subsidising it with tax payer funds to the tune of $1 billion.

Our Shadow Environment Minister, Mark Butler, recently made the point that as the Modi Government in India is proposing to phase out thermal coal imports entirely by 2020 the demand for coal export is rapidly declining. In the event that the Adani mine were to go ahead it would displace existing coal operations elsewhere in Australia. There will be jobs lost elsewhere in Queensland or there will be jobs lost in the Hunter Valley.

Labor has a strong history of acting to protect the environment. It was Labor who initiated the protection of the Great Barrier Reef during the Whitlam Government. It was the Hawke and Keating Governments that protected the Franklin, the Daintree, Antarctica and extended Kakadu. The most recent Labor government ended 30 years of conflict over Tasmania’s forests and 120 years of disagreement over the Murray Darling Basin. It also put in place the world’s largest network of marine reserves.

We have actually done something about protecting the environment when in Government.

We will continue to act and I hope I can be a strong advocate within the Caucus for good environmental policy.

Please feel free to publish, in fact I strongly encourage you to share this email on your groups website, to clarify and eliminate any confusion there may still be around my position on this issue.

Best Regards,

Peter Khalil MP

Federal Member for Wills

Refer:  PDF statement from Peter Khalil.

Entry filed under: Adani, campaigns, coal export, Labors Climate Record.

Westpac have a better climate policy on export coal than Liberal or Labor Municipal Association of Victoria recognises need for urgent climate action

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