King coal’s reign far from over: miner


‘King’ coal will survive the weekend’s call for a world zero carbons emissions target by 2050, one of the industry’s most colourful workers has defiantly declared.

Matt Canavan, seen by many as the poster boy for coal mining, emerged briefly with his pit donkey (above) from the middle of a 12-hour shift at the Bjelke-Petersen colliery’s No3 tunnel pit head near Moranbah in central Queensland to debunk the zero-emissions call by UN Secretary-General, António Guterres.

The UN chief used his address at the Climate Ambition Summit to call on world leaders and Scott Morrison to declare a climate emergency to ensure climate neutrality is reached by 2050.

But Canavan hit back, saying the target was “pure bunkum”.

“Australia will still be digging up cheap, clean coal decades after that deadline has passed,” he said.

“Coal is still by far the cheapest and most efficient way of producing the electricity Australian factories and the Australian public need – and expect – for maintaining their day-to-day lives and living standards,” Canavan stated bluntly, wiping coal dust off his face with a red handkerchief and feeding his donkey a carrot.

“And as Chris “the sun doesn’t always shine and the wind doesn’t always blow” Uhlmann said on the Channel 9 news last night, coal still produces 70 per cent of this nation’s electricity needs.”

He slammed “arrogant” countries for demanding that nations such as Australia that have “coal supplies to burn” should stop producing cheap power with that coal yet they were more than happy to use dangerous nuclear power to create their energy.

“Do we want to ever go down that nuclear path? Of course we do, once Australia runs out of cheap, clean coal to mine and export.”

Brandishing a big chunk of coal one of his workmates had just extracted by hand pick, Canavan said: “This is the cleanest black coal in the world!” before licking it all over to prove his point.

“Besides, all these dire warnings of a rapidly warming climate are pure crap!

“And even if they’re not, this mine is at far too high an attitude (sic) to ever be flooded.”

Canavan is one of a set of triplets (pictured below) who have put in a combined 75 years loyal service at the colliery in the Issac region of central Queensland some 790km north-west of Brisbane.

He is shown on the right with Jed the Younger, left, and Billy Bob, who both sadly succumbed to coal workers’ pneumoconiosis some years back.