New carbon pollution figures released by the federal government highlight the perversity of multi-billion dollar subsidies to the mining industry, according to the Nature Conservation Council of NSW.
The latest update of the National Greenhouse Gas Inventory found that an increase in Australia’s carbon pollution over the last quarter was largely driven by increased fugitive emissions from coal mines. 
“Polluting coal fired power stations have long been recognised as the largest source of carbon pollution in our country. Now, coal mines themselves are emerging as our country’s fastest growing source of carbon emissions,” said Pepe Clarke, Chief Executive Officer of the Nature Conservation Council of NSW.
“Every year, the federal government provides more than $4 billion in subsidies to the mining industry, including nearly $2 billion in fuel tax credits. The coal mining industry is a major beneficiary of these subsidies.
“Public subsidies to this polluting, destructive industry defy common sense. The coal mining industry is earning record profits, with massive expansion plans threatening our land, water and local communities.
“These subsidies contribute to unfair competition between polluting coal power and clean renewable energy, at home and overseas.
“Every cent paid to the mining industry reduces the funding available for renewable energy, environmental protection and social services.
“If the federal government are serious about tackling climate change and returning the budget to surplus, it is imperative that they remove these perverse subsidies in the next federal budget,” Mr Clarke said.
More information: Pepe Clarke 0402 325 471
 “The trend increase for the quarter was largely driven by increases in emissions from fugitive emissions as a result of increased mining of black coal.” www.climatechange.gov.au/climate-change/emissions.aspx.