Australia’s Coal Shipments Face a ‘Deadline,’ Greens Leader Says

(Bloomberg) -- Greens Party leader Adam Bandt has warned the Australian government needs to start moving away from coal exports to prop up its bottom line, saying net zero goals in major trade partners will cut into fossil fuel earnings.

Bandt said three of Australia’s biggest export markets for thermal coal -- Japan, South Korea and Taiwan -- had all pledged to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050 or 2060. The process to decarbonize their economies to meet those targets would act as a “deadline” for Australian coal exports, he added.

“It’s going to be increasingly untenable for the government to maintain its desire to keep opening new coal and gas projects,” Bandt said in an interview with Bloomberg Television.

The Greens Party has a significant number of senators in Australia’s upper house, making Bandt’s support vital to passing Prime Minister Anthony Albanese’s policy agenda. Since he was elected in May, Albanese has attempted to push greater climate action in Australia, including increasing emission cuts targets to 43% by 2030 and rolling out a strategy for greater use of electric vehicles.