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Australia can afford to quit coal, says RBA

Media Release
Adam Bandt 17 Sep 2021

The Greens have reiterated their call for Australia to act in line with the climate science and UN call to quit coal, with an RBA report estimating the impact on the Australian economy would be as low as 0.1% of GDP.

Both Liberal and Labor have repeatedly said they see coal exports continuing even beyond 2050, with no plan (except more subsidies) in the critical decade to 2030.

Two thirds of Australia’s fossil fuel exports go to Japan, China and South Korea. All three countries have committed to net zero - Japan and Korea by 2050, and China by 2060.
Under all scenarios that aim to limit global warming, demand for coal will fall sharply from 2030 - leaving Australian coal-related investments at risk of becoming 'stranded assets'.
The RBA anticipates that the impact of the loss of fossil fuel exports under a net zero scenario would only result in a 0.1 percentage point decrease in annual GDP. This is likely also to be offset by opportunities in other sectors, like renewable energy exports.

Quotes attributable to Greens Leader, Adam Bandt MP:

“Coal is fuelling the climate crisis, which will have catastrophic impacts on people and the planet, as last month’s IPCC report made clear, yet this government is willing to risk killer bushfires, floods and a dead reef for 0.1% of GDP.

“The RBA has made it clear that Australia can afford to quit coal.”

“Australia has a huge opportunity to become a renewable energy superpower, but we have both establishment parties running a protection racket for a dying industry. 

“It’s beyond a joke that we can find unlimited money for perceived military threats, but quibble about very manageable economic impacts to deal with a real and present danger.


“We welcome Victoria’s rejection of the Federal CoalKeeper scheme, but unfortunately the state has its own CoalKeeper in the form of a propped-up Yallourn. 

“Energy Ministers from every state should join together to reject Angus Taylor’s coal-fuelled attack on renewable energy, which could cost households up to $400 a year.”

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