"A proposed pipeline of coal mine projects in Australia, the world’s second-biggest exporter of the fuel, are threatening to lock in decades of new carbon emissions and challenge the country’s promises of bolder climate action.
The federal government is considering 29 applications for new mines and expansions which, if developed to their full capacity, would produce more than 250 million tons a year and contribute as much as 17 billion tons of carbon dioxide emissions, according to a study by Move Beyond Coal, a Sydney-based climate advocacy group. That total is equivalent to more than half of global emissions in 2021.
The future of the country’s $63 billion coal export industry is a dilemma for Prime Minister Anthony Albanese, who took office in May with a promise to improve a weak record on climate action. Though his government has tightened emissions reduction targets, Albanese has also signaled support for new gas and coal developments amid a global energy crisis that’s seen buyers scramble for the country’s exports and swelled profits for fossil-fuel producers. "