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3 - Australia

Contesting Coal Capital on the Liverpool Plains

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  06 November 2020

James Goodman
Affiliation:
University of Technology Sydney
Linda Connor
Affiliation:
University of Sydney
Devleena Ghosh
Affiliation:
University of Technology Sydney
Kanchi Kohli
Affiliation:
Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi
Jonathan Paul Marshall
Affiliation:
University of Technology Sydney
Manju Menon
Affiliation:
Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi
Katja Mueller
Affiliation:
Martin Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg, Germany
Tom Morton
Affiliation:
University of Technology Sydney
Rebecca Pearse
Affiliation:
University of Sydney
Stuart Rosewarne
Affiliation:
University of Sydney
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Summary

Chapter 3 is focusses on a new ‘greenfield’ coal mine in Australia proposed by the world’s largest mining company, the China-based Shenhua corporation. The new coal mine is to be situated on highly productive agricultural land in the Liverpool Plains in NSW. Local opposition is grounded in the landowning classes and Indigenous people who are the Traditional Owners of the land. The developmental myths of both agricultural reliance and sovereign nationhood are challenged by the mine’s approval, disrupting established political alliances. The resulting conflicts are played out in the regulatory process, undermining existing structures and forcing new frameworks into place, from local to national contexts. The case dramatically exposes what is at stake when coal extraction is reconfigured in various ways as a threat to established livelihoods and Indigenous rights, as well as a threat to local environments and to climate stability. Again, we find the deep contradictions of coal extraction brought to the surface, creating new territories of contestation and potential for transformation.

Type
Chapter
Information
Beyond the Coal Rush
A Turning Point for Global Energy and Climate Policy?
, pp. 73 - 115
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2020

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