A pile of coal was dumped at the entrance to deputy Premier Jackie Trad’s electorate office in Brisbane this morning, as anti-coal mining direct action group Galilee Blockade began what it describes as a NAIF Week of Action.
They also displayed a banner with the words “Coal is blocking Labor’s ears” and delivered a letter for the Infrastructure Minister to sign and send on to the Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility board, vetoing financial assistance for the North Galilee Basin Rail Project.
According to spokesman, Ben Pennings, the coal dumping kicked off a week in which members will target all 17 state cabinet members, appealing to them not to gamble their money on Galilee Basin coal mining projects.
Ms Trad’s office has previously been targeted by Blockade members, three of who were arrested a few weeks ago during an 11 hour sit-in.
Mr Penning said Ms Trad was “ignoring the will of her electorate, allowing Adani to get a billion dollars of our money, despite his offshore tax haven”.
Claiming that 75 per cent of Australians and 85 pc of Labor voters don’t want their money going to Adani, he said the deputy Premier was refusing to listen and had sold out to the coal lobby “that donates big money to Labor”.
“We’ve given up on writing submissions – we are taking direct action,” he said. “Ninety-five per cent of the group this morning were from our Grandparents for Galilee group, and we have 13,000 people signed up to support us all round the state.”
He said cabinet members would be receiving hundreds of phone calls all week, from Blockade members.
“NAIF’s own process is clear that the Queensland Labor government can reject the applications of both Adani and Aurizon.
“The NAIF will not proceed with making an investment decision, and further consideration of an investment proposal will cease if at any time the relevant state or territory government provides written notification that financial assistance should not be provided to the project.
“Bill Shorten is against our money going to Adani. Wayne Swan says it’s a slush fund for the Liberals and has asked the Auditor-General to investigate.
“Yet, Queensland Labor are helping Malcolm Turnbull by refusing to veto loan applications from Adani and Aurizon.
“Infrastructure investment is meant to benefit the community long-term, not harm it.
“This money could be invested in cheap renewable energy, tourism, schools or hospitals rather than risking the Reef and the 70,000 jobs that rely on its health.”
On another front, anti-mine group Lock the Gate said mine rehabilitation plans for the proposed giant Carmichael coal mine fall far short of best practice and will expose the environment and taxpayers to huge risks.