5 OCTOBER 2017: I am publishing (in North Queensland newspapers) an open letter to the Head of Current Affairs at the ABC. Monday’s attack on jobs with a program called “Digging into Adani” demonstrated beyond doubt the national broadcaster is overly influenced by the extreme green movement. On behalf of North Queensland families desperate for jobs, I have demanded the ABC provide balance with another story focusing on the Townsville, Bowen and Mackay communities relying on the Carmichael Coal Project going ahead.
The program avoided facts, preferring the green movement’s stock-in-trade: allegations, accusations, and unsubstantiated claims. But no matter how many activists the ABC turns to for comment, repeating the same misinformation does not turn it into fact.
Monday’s episode relied almost exclusively on commentary from other journalists and green activists, including the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, which is funded by big (green left) money from the United States, including the Rockefellers. Their stated mission is “to accelerate the transition to a diverse, sustainable and profitable energy economy and to reduce dependence on coal and other non-renewable energy resources”.
Even lightly scratching the surface of the experts and organisations reveals strong links with the green movement and funding from other activist organisations such as Greenpeace. The lack of credible sources and repetition of the same old allegations, many of which are demonstrably false, indicate a disregard for objectivity. Monday’s episode contained nothing new of any substance, just a continuation of the ABC’s sustained attack on Adani, whose Carmichael Coal Project, when complete, will represent only 17 per cent of Queensland’s coal production.
By allowing itself to become a mouthpiece for green extremists, the ABC has distanced itself from the regional audience, who fund the broadcaster with their taxes. Regional-based journalists continue to engage with their local community but they are increasingly at odds with the Sydney-centric national programs. The national broadcaster still has an important role to play in regional and remote areas where options are limited. However, the Four Corners story is a clear example of capital city media elites talking amongst themselves and demonstrating a disdain for anyone outside their circle.