The elaborate strategy to disrupt, delay and destroy coal mining projects revealed today is a direct attack on Australia’s national interest.

The coal industry, which employs tens of thousands of Australians and generates more than $50 billion per year in export revenue, is vital to Australia’s economic well-being and energy security. Without an increase in coal exports, Australia would have slipped into a recession during the Global Financial Crisis.

Plans to disrupt and stop new coal projects threatens one of the key pillars of the economy. It is economic vandalism.

Coal is a legal and legitimate industry that complies with rigorous environmental and social approvals processes. It should be permitted to expand without facing vexatious, untruthful and potentially unlawful campaigns.

The minerals industry is committed to the principles of sustainable development and its practical implementation; spending billions of dollars minimising its environmental impact, rehabilitating lands and building long-lasting communities. It has worked closely with the environment movement to improve its performance.

It is profoundly disappointing that the green groups, land access campaigners, academics and unions named in the strategy have now embarked on this anti-development campaign.

Supporters of the groups named in the document should be under no illusion that they are signing on with organisations seeking to destroy a legitimate industry that underpins many regional communities.

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