The Minerals Council of Australia have released their long awaited Climate Action Plan. The plan has been described as vacuous and vague. The four page plan which is a series of bullet points places mining at the centre of their plan – promoting gas, nuclear and carbon capture and storage. The emphasis is on mining and technological solutions with no mention of phasing out carbon intensive industries like coal mining gas extraction and the burning of fossil fuels. And no mention of the deep and sustained political and community opposition to nuclear, the existing prohibition on nuclear in Australia or the economic barriers for both nuclear power and uranium mining.
What is telling in the plan is what is not mentioned – like Coal! there is but one mention of coal only to mention the value of carbon capture and storage. The report demonstrates the interests of it’s members – coal, gas and uranium companies – not the interests of delivering real and meaningful climate change abatement.
The Australian Financial Review reported that big institutional investors were not drinking the cool aid served up by the MCA. They wrote:
$878 billion UK giant Aberdeen Standard Investment questioned its reliance on carbon capture and storage technology, which it said was a last resort, and criticised the MCA’s failure to include scope 3 emissions in its net zero pledge. “It doesn’t address scope 3, it doesn’t directly address lobbying, and there is quite a lot of talk of net zero, but it doesn’t seem from what I can see to have any steps to encourage members to become net zero carbon emitters,” said an Aberdeen executive, Danielle Welsh-Rose. The criticisms, echoed by the big bank and super-backed Investor Group on Climate Change cast doubt over whether the new climate policy will be enough to silence investor concerns over the lobby group’s stance on global warming.” Big investors unimpressed by MCA’s climate pledge” James Fernyhough AFR 22/6/2020