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Joyce confirms the Nationals’ latest rort: net zero to include a $3 billion coal subsidy

3 days ago 12

The Morrison government's net zero by 2050 package will include billions in taxpayer money to subsidise an increase in Australia's coal exports.

(Image: Private Media/Tom Red)

Barnaby Joyce has confirmed that the government's 2050 net zero commitment will include a plan to subsidise an increase in coal exports, thereby increasing global greenhouse emissions. As part of the price extracted by the Nationals to support net zero by 2050, the government will commit at least $3 billion and likely more to an extension of its inland rail line that will exist only to increase coal exports from the Surat Basin in Queensland.

The government's own figures show massive investment has no commercial basis, but will provide subsidised carriage of coal to the port of Gladstone -- thus subsidising coal exports.

Joyce told ABC Brisbane last night that (as predicted by Crikey) "you can lock it in" when asked about the extension of the disastrous inland rail line to Gladstone -- expected to blow out the cost of the project from $15 billion to $20 billion. Bizarrely, the Canberra press gallery, which is obsessively focused on what deal Morrison can engineer with the Nationals over a net zero comment, completely ignored the announcement.

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About the Author

Bernard Keane

Politics Editor @BernardKeane

Bernard Keane is Crikey's political editor. Before that he was Crikey's Canberra press gallery correspondent, covering politics, national security and economics.

Bernard Keane — Politics Editor

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