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Why are Aussie celebs making a stand against mega mine?

Bernard Fanning
Bernard Fanning

TWO Australian cricket captains, a former deputy premier, a former coal lobbyist and one of John Howard's chief advisors are among at least 80 prominent Australians to have signed a letter calling for Adani to abandon the Carmichael mine.

As the Australian cricket team tours India, former cricket captains Greg Chappell and Ian Chappell have signed the letter urging Indian billionaire Gautam Adani to make sure the mine "never goes ahead".

A group of Australians, including former Howard Government adviser Geoff Cousins and Whitsunday tourist operator Lindsay Simpson, will deliver the letter to Mr Adani.

The letter delivery will occur as Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk and six Queensland mayors are on a trade mission in India that will include discussions on the mine.

Adani and the government say the mine will create about 10,000 jobs across regional Queensland. Green groups have questioned this number.

Adani has announced it will establish regional mining headquarters in Townsville and rail and port headquarters in Mackay.

Australian celebrities have urged Adani to abandon plans for the Carmichael mine.
Australian celebrities have urged Adani to abandon plans for the Carmichael mine. CentroArt

The letter to be delivered to Mr Adani argues the mine does not have public support and warns it could harm India's reputation in Australia.

"It would be a great shame if this one project were to damage the image of India in Australia," the letter reads.

"We understand the Adani Group has not made a final investment decision on the Carmichael coal mine. We strongly urge you to decide to abandon this project."

The signatories include former Victorian Deputy Premier John Thwaites, former Australian Coal Association chair Ian Dunlop and Pulitzer prize-winning author Geraldine Brooks.

Members of Midnight Oil, including former Labor MP Peter Garrett, and fellow musicians Missy Higgins and Bernard Fanning have also signed the letter.

Adani is also planning to build a 200-megawatt solar plant near Moranbah. Mr Cousins said the Indian company should invest in more solar plants instead of coal.

"Coal is a dirty, dying industry and polls show the majority of Australians are appalled that Adani is getting a $1 billion handout of public money to finance a project banks won't touch. We would welcome Adani's investment in solar instead," he said.

Adani has previously claimed coal from Carmichael would produce less emissions than alternatives when used as fuel for Indian power stations.

The Carmichael mine is still facing a number of legal challenges.

Comment from Adani has been sought. 

ARM NEWSDESK

Topics:  adani adani carmichael mine bernard fanning greg chappell letter solar power


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