The Australian Mining Industry (AMI) is struggling to get its operations back on track.
In a statement to Fairfax Media, AMI chief executive, Chris Ritchie, said the industry had been “taken for a ride” by a “powerful, aggressive and self-serving” mining lobby.
“It’s not just about mine owners getting richer; it’s about politicians, government and the public at large,” he said.
“They have the ability to change the laws to their benefit at any time, with no legal requirements.”
The mining industry has long been under pressure to make some of its practices more environmentally friendly, but Ritchie has argued the industry should be more proactive in making its practices better.
“There is no doubt the mining industry needs to improve its environmental practices,” he told Fairfax Media.
“But we need to make sure that the changes we make to our industry don’t damage the environment.”
He said mining companies had been given a “moral mandate” to take their own “responsibility” and to do things better.
A mining company, which has a contract to mine iron ore, holds a meeting with federal government ministers at Parliament House in Canberra, Australia, November 14, 2018.
(Reuters) The Australian Chamber of Mines has called for mining companies to “come clean” and acknowledge the environmental damage caused by their operations.
“Our sector has become the focus of much media attention, but there is still so much more to be done in the industry,” said Paul Farrar, chief executive of the AIMA.
“We want to be seen to be doing the right thing.”
But the mining lobby is not the only player trying to get mining companies back on their feet.
The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) has recently announced it will be changing the way it operates.
In June, it said it would scrap the “last gasp” rule, which would allow companies to sell excess gas at low prices to consumers, while it also introduced a new “last-in, first-out” policy.
Under this new policy, the cheapest gas can only be sold to consumers at the cheapest price and a “last in, first out” system will be introduced for gas purchases.
The change will see gas prices “reset” for gas purchased in 2020.
But the AEMO’s own analysis showed the new system would reduce the average retail price of gas by an average of $1.60 a litre.
This would mean the average consumer would save $2.10 a year on their gas bill.