Amazing news for the Reef! One of the world’s top investment banks Citi – has joined Deutsche Bank, Royal Bank of Scotland, HSBC and Barclays by stating they will not fund Reef destruction by financing the new Abbot Point coal terminal. If foreign banks aren’t willing to finance the development of coal ports in the Great Barrier Reef then why aren’t Australia’s big four banks standing up for our own natural wonder?
It’s no surprise being associated with the development of the Galilee Basin projects and its port facilities, including Abbot Point, is bad for business. The plans are outrageous.
Here are 10 reasons why it’s time Australia’s big four banks should follow suit and pull out of the Galilee Basin and Abbot Point:
- Wrecking the climate: If the Galilee Basin projects go ahead, nine new mega coal mines – could produce more coal than all of Australia’s current exports.
- Coal is so last season: The profitability of coal projects is showing rapid deterioration following a halving of the coal price.
- Shipping through the reef: To export all the coal produced from the Galilee Basin projects, coal will have to be shipped through the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage area. Coal ships passing through the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area will increase from 1,722 in 2011 to a capacity close to tens of thousands by the end of the decade.
- Digging up the reef: Coal ships will need deep-water access at Abbot Point. Located inside the Great Barrier Reef marine park, the development of Abbot Point will see millions of cubic metres of dugong habitat dredged, posing irreversible harm to the coral and marine life.
- A warning to the banks: BlackRock, the world’s largest asset management company, has warned investors to steer clear of the project.
- It’s looking shaky: This new move by the major US banks indicates that the Adani Group and GVK may be unsuccessful in their bid to secure an estimated $26.5 billion in external financing necessary for the construction of Abbot Point.
- Losing UNESCO status: UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee could place the Great Barrier Reef on the World Heritage in Danger list, jeopardising the AUD $6 billion Reef tourism industry, if the Australian Government can’t commit to ensuring that the Reef will be protected from the dredging plans by 2015.
- A bad investment: An industry brief by the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis (IEEFA) has found proposals for new coal-production facilities in the Galilee Basin are too risky to attract adequate investor support.
- They have the power: Tom Sanzillo, the US-based author of the report and IEEFA’s Director of Finance has said “the Galilee coal project proposals are highly unlikely to proceed without the support of the four Australian bank majors”.
- Responsible for our own Reef: If foreign banks are pulling out of reef destruction then Australian banks should stand up for our own World Heritage site.
‘If the world’s top investment banks can say no to Reef destruction, why can’t you?’