Executives and workers locked in ETS row

The row between mining lobby groups and coal mine workers continues, with Queensland Resources Council chief executive Michael Roche weighing into the debate over the Federal Government's Emissions Trading Scheme today.

The row between mining lobby groups and coal mine workers continues, with Queensland Resources Council chief executive Michael Roche weighing into the debate over the Federal Government’s emissions trading scheme (ETS) today.

Last week the coal miners’ union showed support for ETS legislation, and refuted coal mining lobby groups’ claims that the proposed ETS would cost the industry thousands of jobs.

Roche said today, “The CFMEU leadership seems to regard the loss of tens of thousands of new jobs in the Queensland coal industry as nothing to get excited about,” Roche said.

“The bottom line is that, as currently designed, the ETS will close coal mines, cost jobs in coal mining and support industries and all this without doing anything to reduce global emissions,” he said.

According to Roche, coal mining communities will be expected to pay more than double their fair share of tax under the ETS.

“The coal industry is asking for is fair treatment in line with other industry sectors,” Roche said.

“Under the ETS, the coal industry is going to be taxed an extra $10 billion over the next decade for methane emissions from mining that can neither be measured accurately nor reduced significantly.”

According to Roche, if the coal industry was being treated the same as other emissions-intensive, trade exposed industries, the additional tax imposition would be around $4 billion.

“In other words the coal industry and the communities relying on it for long-term job security are being railroaded into paying more than twice as much as anyone else,” Roche said.

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