The Carmichael mine being pursued in the Galilee Basin in Central Queensland is a dinosaur before its creation. On paper, it is hefty – to be some five times the size of Sydney harbour, the largest in Australia and one of the largest on the planet. Six open cut and five underground mines covering some 30 kilometres are proposed, a gargantuan epic. The coal itself would be transported through the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and World Heritage Area, and would feature a rail line subsidised by the money of Australian taxpayers.
Even before the initial steps are taken, its realisation is doomed to obsolescent indulgence and environmental wearing. It has been endorsed by a bribed political class best represented by Liberal senator Matt Canavan, who sees Adani through tinted glasses as a “little Aussie batter”; it is run by an unelected plutocratic one. This venture has seen Australian politicians, protoplasmic and spineless, do deals with a company run by a billionaire in a way that sneers at democracy and mocks the common citizenry.
The Adani group, run by its persistent Chairman Gautam Adani, has worked out what political figures want to hear and how far it can go, even in the face of mounting opposition. His closeness to the halls of power has been noted: influential be he who has the ear of the Indian Prime Minister, Nahendra Modi.
How divisive the Carmichael project is between Australia’s morally flexible politicians and a growing body of…