Australia Becomes First Nation to Eliminate Carbon Tax
In a landmark decision Australia has become the first nation in the world to repeal the carbon tax which puts a price on greenhouse-gas emissions. The news comes after the initial repeal was blocked by the senate earlier this year.
The Senate voted 39 to 32 to eliminate the 23.45 tax per metric ton of carbon dioxide that was introduced by Labor government Prime Minister Julia Gillard in July 2012.
After the announcement, Prime Minister Tony Abbott stated that he had achieved its objective of “axing the toxic tax.” Abbott also reiterated the government could still find support for its plan to pay polluters to reduce their emissions.
"We are a government which absolutely appreciates that we have only got one planet and we should pass it on to our children and grandchildren in at least as good shape as we found it," Abbott said.
"So we are a conservationist government and we will do what we think is the sensible thing to try to bring emissions down."
News of the repeal was welcomed by the NSW Minerals Council, the Queensland Resources Council, and the Australian Mines and Metals Association.
“Repeal of the carbon tax is good news for the Queensland economy,” QRC CEO Michael Roche said.
Tony Abbott, who made repealing the tax a central pledge of his campaign, characterized the revoked measure as a “useless destructive tax, which damaged jobs, which hurt families’ cost of living and which didn’t actually help the environment.”
The carbon tax has affected various industries ranging from mining and energy to aviation, and even the country’s main chamber of commerce.
Vale invests $150mn to extend life of Manitoba operations
Vale has announced a $150mn CAD investment to extend current mining activities in Thompson, Manitoba by 10 years while aggressive exploration drilling of known orebodies holds the promise of mining well past 2040.
Global energy transition is boosting the market for nickel
The Thompson Mine Expansion is a two-phase project. The announcement represents Phase 1 and includes critical infrastructure such as new ventilation raises and fans, increased backfill capacity and additional power distribution. The changes are forecast to improve current production by 30%.
“This is the largest single investment we have made in our Thompson operations in the past two decades,” said Mark Travers, Executive Vice-President for Base Metals with Vale. “It is significant news for our employees, for the Thompson community and for the Province of Manitoba.
“The global movement to electric vehicles, renewable energies and carbon reduction has shone a welcome spotlight on nickel – positioning the metal we mine as a key contributor to a greener future and boosting world demand. We are proud that Thompson can be part of that future and part of the low carbon solution.”
Vale continues drilling program at Manitoba
Coupled with today’s announcement, Vale is continuing an extensive drilling program to further define known orebodies and search for new mineralization.
“This $150mn investment is just one part of our ambitious Thompson turnaround story. It is an indicator of our confidence in a long future for the Thompson operations,” added Dino Otranto, Chief Operating Officer for Vale’s North Atlantic Base Metals operations.
“Active collaboration between our design team, technical services, USW Local 6166, and our entire Thompson workforce has delivered a safe, efficient and fit-for-purpose plan that will enable us to extract the Thompson nickel resources for many years to come.”
The Thompson orebody was first discovered in 1956 by Vale (then known as Inco) following the adoption of new exploration technology and the largest exploration program to-date in the company’s history. Mining of the Thompson orebody began in 1961.
“We see the lighting of a path forward to a sustainable and prosperous future for Vale Base Metals in Manitoba,” said Gary Annett, General Manager of Vale’s Manitoba Operations.