Adani has just announced another scaled down version of its proposed Carmichael mine, bringing the initial capital cost down to $2 billion, and the estimated initial output to 10-15 million tonnes a year. As usual, the claim is that financing will close in the near future.
Unfortunately, it is possible that this time the project will go ahead. The Indian Supreme Court has reopened the possibility that Adani may be able to pass on to customers the costs of imported coal for its Mundra power station.
That doesn’t change the fact that the project is economically unsustainable in the long run, as well as being an environmental disaster (though not as big a disaster as in its original version). But the cost is now low enough that, if Gautam Adani is willing to put in enough of his money, he may find lenders willing to finance the rest.
At this point, it looks as if Labor will have to get off the fence, on which has perched for so long. The world needs to stop opening new coal mines, and Carmichael is a good place to start.