Bob Brown challenges Morrison to stand up to Beijing on Australia’s environment.
According to today’s Australian Financial Review (Matt Oliver p. 12), China Minmetals Corporation, which owns MMG including the Rosebery mine in Tasmania, has been agglomerated, with two other giant state-owned mining companies, into a giant “super group” called China Rare Earths.
This mining colossus is likened to an ‘aircraft carrier’ and, according to the AFR, analysts warn that it will give Beijing even stronger influence over pricing. The report says that ‘Chinese media state outlets have also hinted that its stranglehold could also be weaponised as Beijing’s “ace in the hole” during tense US-China trade war flare-ups. It has only added to the nervousness in western capitals in ever greater need of the essential minerals, as reliance on technology that contains them grows.’
Bob Brown Foundation says that Canberra is being taken to the cleaners by Beijing in regards to MMG’s proposed toxic waste dump in the Tarkine rainforest where preliminary works are due to begin as early as next Friday, 21st January.
The foundation is preparing to peacefully blockade the ‘entirely unnecessary destruction of this ancient area of rainforest when good alternatives for the dump exist outside the Tarkine’.
Foundation patron Bob Brown says that Beijing obviously sees the Rosebery mine as part of its geopolitical power play in the world and has found Canberra and Hobart asleep at the wheel of environmental prudence and Australia’s national interests.
“The Morrison government is licensing this giant state-owned Chinese corporation to blitz the rainforest in the Tarkine with no independent analysis of the perfectly reasonable and prudent options outside the Tarkine, on the Rosebery mine side of the Pieman River. The Prime Minister and his Minister for the Environment Sussan Ley should urgently review their derelict decision-making at Rosebery in light of the far greater global self-interest Beijing is levying here and worldwide.”
“The Tarkine rainforest toxic waste dump proposal is wickedly unnecessary. It is an environmental outrage. If it goes ahead I will be going up there to join the foundation’s gallant staff and volunteers standing in the way of this atrocious and entirely avoidable robbery of Tasmania’s natural heritage,” Brown said.