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Anti mining protestor locks himself to machinery at $21B coal project

Anti-Adani protestor John Williams
Anti-Adani protestor John Williams

An anti mining activist locked himself onto a rig to protest against a $21 billion coal project in Central Queensland on August 21.

Emu Park local John Williams (pictured) allegedly locked himself to a drill rig at Adani Australia’s Carmichael Coal Project to also express dissatisfaction towards the State Government’s recent crack down against “dangerous devices” that extreme activists have used to make it harder for emergency services to free them.

“Civil disobedience, including the use of lock-on devices, has a long and vital history of driving positive social change in Australia and around the world,” a Frontline Action On Coal spokesperson said on Facebook. “If Premier Palaszczuk and Resources Council CEO Ian McFarlane are concerned about safety, they should consider the health impacts of continued inaction in the face of climate emergency.”

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Broken glass, explosive gas found

The government accuses protesters from the Extinction Rebellion group of filling lock devices with broken glass and explosive gas with the intention of injuring those who try to cut them free.

If the ban is passed in parliament, protesters could face 12 months in jail for possession or two years if caught using a “dangerous device”.

Consultancy succumbs to pressure

The proponent has faced a difficult start to the week with engineering consultancy Aurecon announcing it is ending its dealings with Adani.

It comes after the Australian Conservation Foundation targeted several companies that are either consulting or contracting for the mine. Aurecon was one of many companies whose executives were targeted by activists via email and other contact methods.

“There has been a concerted campaign by extremists against our Carmichael Project and businesses that partner with us,” an Adani spokesperson said according to the Australian Associated Press. “It has not succeeded and construction of the Carmichael Project is well and truly underway.”

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