Coastal Sun – June 6th 2002:The Hidden Costs of Charcoal

Coastal Sun – 6 June 2002
Articles associated with the Charcoal plant issue
Published with permission

A United Nations adviser for the development of emissions trading world-wide says the NSW government did not account for greenhouse emission costs, when it assessed the development application for the charcoal plant at Mogo.

Robert Vincin is Managing Director of Emissions Traders International and a leading expert on greenhouse gases and their cost to industry.

Mr Vincin explained to 70 people at Broulee, on Saturday that over $1 billion dollars is not accounted for in the assessment of economic sustainability.

He spoke out, despite the fact he claimed had been warned by Peter Anderton, CEO of Australian Silicon P/L, that he had ‘better look out’ if he went ahead with his address.

The company will be liable to pay a huge bill for greenhouse emissions incurred by the 3 pronged silicon plant in Lithgow, under the new ‘greenhouse law’ initiated by NSW Premier Carr. The total may be as high as $1.6 billion dollars within 20 years, taking into account carbon loss from stack, energy and vehicle emissions, removal of timber and replanting of forests.
“It’s economic vandalism, economic irresponsibility. It will have to come out of the national economy,” Mr Vincin said.

Apparently China, which is now part of the World Trade Organization, manufactures quality silicon, using coal as a reductant. It would be far cheaper for us to import it than produce it,” he said. “The type of silicon that Australian Silicon would produce is not the type used for computer chips. That would require a further process for the Lithgow product.”
Mr Vincin says fighting the development is as simple as E=MC2. E = Environment, M = Money and C = Carbon which when you ‘square’ it becomes E = Environment, M = MPs and C = (voting) Community.

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