Minister for Northern Australia Matt Canavan says the Labor Party needs to come clean and state its true position on the Adani Carmichael Coal project in Central Queensland.
“Development of the Adani Carmichael mine, construction of a rail line to the coast and the expansion of the Abbot Point coal terminal are vital for jobs and growth in Queensland,” Senator Canavan said today.
“If Labor doesn’t support Adani, then it’s not fair dinkum about creating new jobs in the northern half of Queensland.”
Senator Canavan said that Terri Butler, parliamentary secretary to Labor leader Bill Shorten, had now joined a growing chorus of Labor MPs or candidates opposed to the Carmichael mine.
“On Monday night, Terri Butler told a national television audience she agreed with Greens leader Richard Di Natale in that she “doesn’t support the Adani Mine either.” (Q & A, ABC TV, 30/05/16 – see transcript below)
“There are now at least half a dozen Labor candidates for the July 2 election who have come out and opposed the Adani mine. That means they oppose a project that can create thousands of jobs and give an enormous boost to the economy across much of Queensland.
“Even Bill Shorten refuses to endorse the mine and associated port works. When asked by a journalist in Rocky earlier this year ‘So, is the Abbot Point expansion viable?’, he talked about environmentalists: ‘Well, there’s a lot people who say it is but of course there are some environmentalists that have a different view.'
“That’s not the ringing endorsement regional Queenslanders are looking for to support a massive new job-creating project.”
Senator Canavan said Bill Shorten needs to choose between the people of Central Queensland, or the Greens and his Parliamentary Secretary Terri Butler.
“You support either Queensland or New South Wales in the Origin – and you support either mining jobs or the Greens in politics. You can’t have it both ways – you have to pick a side.
“The problem is Labor is not a united team. Some of them want to start the boats and stop the mines, although they are desperately trying to hoodwink people on these issues before an election.
“So what is Labor’s position? Do they support local jobs in Central Queensland, and do they support this mine which could deliver 10,000 jobs to our region? Or they just worried about holding their leftwing voters in inner-city electorates in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne who are drifting off to the Greens?
“That’s their choice, and they need to come clean with the people of Queensland about their choice before the election.”
Terri Butler on Q and A, ABC TV, 30/05/16:
Terri Butler: I don’t support the Adani Mine either I’ve got to say I mean…
Terri Butler: No no, fair play to our State Government, they didn’t have much discretion, they were using laws that had been amended by the Newman Government. But I don’t support it. And might I say this, it’s great that you’ve got a good policy Richard [Di Natale] – it’s absolutely fantastic. But we have a fantastic policy and we can form government and deliver it, that’s the difference between Labor and the Greens.