This Op Ed was published on Crikey’s ‘Rooted’ blog on Tuesday, giving rise to the War-And-Peace-Epic 11,000 word comment war I’ve included below for shits and giggles.
Don’t be fooled, Mantle are in it for the money
Few could accuse Mantle Mining company director Ian Kraemer of lacking rhetorical ambition. Attending a public meeting in Bacchus Marsh last week to explain his plan to turn local farmlands into a brown coal mine, Kraemer was keen to talk up his environmental credibility. ‘Brown coal’, he told locals present, ‘has the ability to be the saviour of the planet’.
Now, given brown coal’s status as one of the world’s most polluting fossil fuels, this seems an odd statement. Yet Kraemer is adamant it can be defended. Mantle, he says, plans to use a special technique developed by another company, Exergen, to remove moisture from the coal, thereby reducing its greenhouse emissions by up to 40%. Given that countries such as China and India are likely to use brown coal for some time to come, he argues, it makes good environmental sense to help them to burn it in a cleaner way.
But can we trust Kraemer’s reasoning here? To begin, let’s examine the claim that Exergen’s coal-drying technology will reduce greenhouse emissions from burning brown coal by up to 40%. A quick review of the company’s very own promotional material shows how deceitful that figure really is. Read the rest of this entry »