UPDATE: In a follow up to this morning’s action at Townsville Adani headquarters, ten community members interrupted a Liberal press conference – Andrew Cripps, LNP sitting member for Hinchinbrook, Casie Scott, candidate for Townsville, Matthew Derlagen, candidate for Mundingburra got a surprise visit this morning from Stop Adani campaigners.
Hayley Sestokas, a young mum from the Whitsundays said, “Our local representatives should be protecting the climate and the reef, and standing up for the interests of the community instead of a foreign corporation. People around the country are mobilising to stop this mine. Whether it’s on the campaign trail, or in the offices of Adani, we will be there to stop them, every step of the way.”
Wendy Tubman, local environmentalist, challenged the candidates about consistent misrepresentation of jobs figures saying, “Adani has said the project will be automated, from pit to port. Locally there are more job opportunities in renewables, and we want to see more investment in sustainable industry.”
The three community members who were locked on in the Adani Headquarters are currently being processed at the Townsville police station and have been told they will be charged with obstruction and trespass. We have been informed they will be released early this afternoon.
Townsville, 20th November: Twenty people are occupying the Adani Headquarters in Townsville, including three people who have locked themselves together in front of the entrance to prevent Adani workers accessing their office.
Donna, Will and Tully, who are locked on, are taking this action today to send a clear message that Adani should not be given $1 billion of taxpayer money and that the Carmichael coal mine should not go ahead.
Will Hamilton, 66, currently locked on and a former property developer from Brisbane, says “With all its negative consequences on our environment, Australians all over the country are expressing their total rejection of the Adani Coal mine proposal. We take this action in the belief that others will become more aware of these issues and join us in raising their voices against the Adani coal mine proposal.”
Protest against Adani has been amplifying across Australia, including on the ground at the construction site and at their headquaters in Townsville. In recent weeks several people from Frontline Action on Coal have been arrested occupying the Adani offices and disrupting construction of the Adani-owned railway.
Adani is a key focus of the Queensland election, with Palaszczuk earlier this month promising to veto the $1 billion loan to Adani to build the railway. Recent polls have shown that two thirds of Queenslanders oppose taxpayer money funding the Adani railway. Despite this, the LNP have not ruled out providing $1 billion of taxpayer money to Adani.
Donna Smit, 48, a systems analyst from Queensland who is also currently locked on, says “I am here today because our Governments and corporations are failing us. Ordinary people taking extraordinary action is the corner they have painted us into, and I am prepared to do whatever it takes to stop Adani’s catastrophic mine from being built.”
Tully Doole, 22, is from the south coast of NSW and is worried about the future. She says “I don’t want to be responsible for the extreme weather, the bush fires, the floods, the droughts and the death of the great barrier reef.”
Location: Townsville Adani Headquarters
Photos are being uploaded here: https://flic.kr/s/aHsm8bjNUR