Delivery for coal mining: kaeser meets climate activist
Shortly before the expected decision on the controversial delivery of a train signal system for a huge coal mine in australia, siemens CEO joe kaeser meets fridays for future activist luisa neubauer.
The invitation to the meeting was sent out at the beginning of the week, and it will take place on friday, a company spokesman said on thursday. Earlier, the editorial network of germany (RND/friday) had reported on the meeting, which is to take place in berlin. As the german press agency from the enterprise surrounding field learned, could besides still this week a decision over the supply fall.
"We take the issue very seriously and take the necessary time to listen to and discuss different perspectives," a siemens spokesman said of the meeting on friday. There had already been protests last year against the munich-based group’s contribution to the billion-dollar project. As recently as december, an activist from extinction rebellion had glued himself to a window of the company’s headquarters.
In mid-december, siemens CEO joe kaeser made the issue a top priority and announced that he would review the project. "I will look into the matter carefully and get back to you soon," kaeser wrote on twitter. At the time, he explicitly left open the question of whether siemens would forego the contract. But the decision is now apparently imminent.
Siemens is faced with a dilemma when it comes to the contract for the signaling system for the billion-euro project of the indian industrial group adani: the company has set itself the goal of becoming climate-neutral by 2030 and repeatedly emphasizes the climate-protecting effect of its technology. But for its contribution to the planned coal-fired power plant, the munich-based company is now being pilloried by climate protectionists, because burning coal releases carbon dioxide, which contributes to global warming.
Siemens does not disclose the volume of its order, but there is talk in circles of a dimension of around 20 million euros. That’s not much by siemens standards, especially when you consider the damage to the company’s image from the protests.
For friday, fridays for future called for protests in front of siemens offices in germany under the slogan "siemens schur keine feuer" ("siemens don’t burn"). Among other things, a 24-hour vigil is planned in munich in front of the siemens headquarters.
In addition, neubauer, who has now been invited by kaeser, wrote in a joint guest article with nick heubeck for the "welt" newspaper at the beginning of the week: "the mine project is only made possible by cooperation with companies like siemens, which are thus (not only) metaphorically tipping coal into the fire. While people are still fleeing the flames, it is precisely these companies that have to show what responsible action means."The abandonment of the contract demanded by neubauer and heubeck would be "a small step for the group, but a rough sign for australia and the rest of the world".
Adani wants to build one of the world’s largest coal mines in australia with a width of 45 kilometers, which will require up to 60 million tons of coal per year from five underground mines and six open pit mines. The project has been fought by environmentalists for years. In mid-2019, the australian authorities gave the go-ahead for the project. The coal industry plays an important role in australia.