Willow Tree, NSW 20/03/2016
On Sunday peaceful protest, at Willow Tree NSW, halted Whitehaven Coal’s trains from reaching Newcastle Port. Trains were stopped for 5 hours after 33 year old Jamie Dunnit scaled, and occupied, the locomotives pulling the wagons laden with coal from Whitehaven’s coal mine. This community action occurs in the midst of a government crackdown on people who try to defend themselves from the impact of fossil fuel industries through peaceful protest.
“New legislation in New South Wales means that a person protecting their communities from mining will face a similar fine to a company that is in breach of environmental regulations,” said former mining worker and Front Line Action On Coal spokesperson Jason Mclean. “The corruption that has been investigated by ICAC has clearly not been weeded out, as Mike Baird continues to protect the interests of the very same companies involved in the scandal.”
Jamie Dunnit, 33, who works in bush regeneration spent the afternoon atop a coal train at Willow Tree – “These (anti protest) laws are a last ditch attempt from a dying industry to save itself as people stand up for their rights. We are showing them that we will not be deterred from protesting. We will not be silenced”.
Over 400 people have been arrested standing up for culture, community, ecology, land and water over the past four years in protest against the destruction of the Leard State Forest by Whitehaven Coal’s Maules Creek mine.
Jason McLean said of the action that civil disobedience “would not stop until the Government puts the wellbeing of its citizens ahead of that of big business.”
“We call upon the NSW State Government to help communities transition to sustainable economies as the mining boom ends and the world moves towards ensuring a safe climate future.
Mike Baird’s condemnation will not stop us from standing up against dodgy companies like Whitehaven. We will stand up to them from the Pit to the Port.”
Jason Mclean, Media Spokesperson – 0424 555 166
Updates on twitter @FLACCoal
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