Ensuring the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) cannot be used for coal and gas projects is what the Green Party is calling on the government to do, especially as Labor this week sought to increase the size of the facility $2 Billion Facility.
The Greens are actively preparing to introduce in Parliament an amendment to the North Australia Infrastructure Facility (Miscellaneous Measures) Amendment Bill 2023 that would prevent the use of the NAIF to finance coal mining or natural gas, the construction of gas pipelines or the logging of native forests.
Greens spokeswoman Senator Penny Allman-Payne said the proposed amendment the Greens intend to introduce in Parliament is exactly the same as previous amendments that Labor has backed twice in this parliament.
“The Greens will not support the Labor Party’s plan to pump an extra $2 billion into the NAIF without railings to ensure it cannot be used to finance coal and gas. The NAIF is a Abbott-era fossil fuel slush fund that the coalition government tried to use to fund the Adani coal mine,” she said.
Penny Allman-Payne also recalled that to stop the use of the National Reconstruction Fund and the Powering the Regions Fund to finance coal and gas, the Greens decided to negotiate with the Albanian government.
According to the spokesperson for the Greens, the workers must explain why they will not apply this in the same way to the NAIF. The only reason they would want this is to provide public funding to set up and operate the Beetaloo and Middle Arm gas and petrochemical projects.
“The UN, the International Energy Agency and scientists around the world have made it clear that we cannot open new coals and gases if we are to have any chance of staying below 1.5 degrees of warming. Yet Labor continues to support new coal and gas projects,” she said.
Penny Allman-Payne thinks that if Labor is to have any chance of meeting even its weak emissions targets, it needs to heed the science, listen to the community and support the Greens’ amendment.