Saturday, October 07, 2017

56% Australians oppose Adani coalmine project, 65.8% want veto on $1 billion govt loan amidst massive protests

By Our Representative
An Australian survey by Brisbane-based TeachTEL, which calls itself “leader in automated communications” across the country and in New Zealand, has said that 55.6% of those polled oppose the powerful Indian tycoon Gautam Adani’s controversial $16 billion Carmichael coalmine project, with an even bigger number saying they are against the Queensland state of Australia allowing the company to receive a $1bn federal loan.
Commissioned by the Stop Adani Alliance, which claims to be a growing grassroots movement of local action groups working to stop Adani’s what it calls “disastrous plans for a dirty new coal mine”, even as building “the biggest environmental movement in Australia’s history”, survey has been released amidst protests at dozens of locations in the country to “oppose” to the project.
The ReachTel surveyed about 2,200 people across Australia. It found 55.6% of respondents opposed the mine going ahead, which is more than twice the number who supported the mine. As many as 18.4% of respondents saying they were “undecided”.
On being asked what do they think of Queensland premier Annastacia Palaszczuk making an election commitment not to spend public funds on Adani’s project, 65.8% of those polled wanted her to veto the possible $1bn loan the federal government might give to the project through the Northern Australian Infrastructure Facility (NAIF).
The project site
“That view was unanimous across voters of all persuasions – respondents who said they voted Liberal, National, Labor, Green, One Nation, Australian Conservatives, as well as those who were undecided, were all more likely to think Palaszczuk should veto the loan”, said the British “Guardian”, reporting on the poll.
The report said, the Australian Conservative voters were the “only group with clear support for the mine, with 57% saying they backed it”, adding, “Liberal voters were almost split down the middle – 39.3% backed the mine and 34.1% opposed it, while 25.7% were undecided.”
“A clear majority of most other voters opposed the mine proceeding – 69% of Labor, 58% of National and 90% of Greens voters. Among the One Nation voters, more opposed the mine going ahead (44.9%) than supported it (37.7%)”, the daily reported.
The polling follows earlier surveys showing similar numbers, including one commissioned by GetUp in January, finding that three-quarters of respondents believed a loan to Adani was not a good use of public money. Another polling by The Australia Institute in May found 59% of Queensland voters were opposed to any state or federal assistance for the mine.
The voting has taken place close on the heels of an Australian journalistic exposure titled “Digging into Adani: The dubious dealings of India's corporate colossus”, carried out by Four Corners travelled to Kutch in Gujarat to investigate the activities of the Adani Group. The noticed now it “soon discovered the power of the company.”
An Adani project in Kutch
“While attempting to film and gather information about Adani's operations, the Four Corners team had their cameras shut down, their footage deleted and were questioned for hours by police”, a Four Corners note says, adding, “The team were left in no doubt that their investigations into the Indian company triggered the police action.”
Claiming that the Four Corners “has been digging into the business practices of the Adani Group” for years, the note, which is accompanied with a video footage, quotes a former government minister as saying that there were “not accidental” but “deliberate, willful violations" of environment in Kutch, where it largely operates.
Digging into Adani, reported by Stephen Long and presented by Sarah Ferguson, went on air on October 2, and was replayed on October 3 and 4, on ABC News channel.
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Click HERE for survey results

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