Malcolm Turnbull defends coal industry

Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has made a spirited defence of the coal industry and has branded opponents campaigning against coal as “delusional”.

Speaking at the Liberal National Party state convention in Brisbane on Saturday, Mr Turnbull also criticised the Queensland government for what he described as its  ‘reckless’ plans to ensure Queensland’s energy supply is carbon neutral by 2050.

He said Australia’s interest was in ensuring the future of the coal industry.

“Those people who say coal and other fossil fuels have no future are delusional and they fly in the face of all of the economic forecasts,” Mr Turnbull said.

He said Queensland’s plans to source 50 per cent of its electricity supply by 2030 would create the same problems that had confronted South Australia, high prices and supply issues.

“We know what happens if you allow left-wing ideology and politics to drive your energy policy. You get unreliable and unaffordable power, and business is driven out of your State,” Mr Turnbull said.

“Now, what the Palaszczuk government is seeking to do here is undermine your competitiveness in the interests of chasing green votes in the inner city and you can’t allow them to get away with it, and we won’t.”

Mr Turnbull’s comments follow South Australia, Victoria, Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory deciding to go it alone on clean energy. With the Federal government trying to decide whether it should set up a clean energy target, the four states on Friday decided to ask the Australian Energy Market Commission to draw up plans for one.


Business First is a peer-to-peer magazine: written by CEOs and other high level executives, with interviews with some of the country’s best leaders.

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