Dozens of anti-mining demonstrators were detained after delaying fossil fuel operations.
Climate change protestors were recently arrested for trespassing and stopping a coal train for four hours near Tourle Street, 9km northwest of downtown Newcastle.
Police accused more than 100 Rising Tide supporters of trespassing on private property, occupying the heavy vehicle and shovelling coal from carriages fropm up to six metres above ground level at around 10am on 16 April 2023. They also held a banner saying “Survival guide for humanity: No new coal”.
The group claimed the recent spike in coal production left them with “no option” but to commit civil disobedience.
“[We are] facing the largest coal expansion since the Paris Agreement was signed in 2015. The Hunter Valley Operations expansion alone would produce more than a third of New South Wales’ domestic emissions for the next 25 years,” law student Zack Schofield said in a public statement.
“Legal consequences are far less terrifying than runaway climate collapse and social breakdown.”
However, officers were not impressed and charged a 59-year-old male with destroying or damaging property, obstruction and interfering with business. A 32-year-old man was charged with common assault and obstruction. The pair was taken to Waratah Police Station, granted bail and summoned to appear at Newcastle Local Court on 1 June 2023.
A 47-year-old accused male intruder was refused bail and ordered to appear before court on April 17.
A further 44 individuals were also summoned to court for obstruction, aggravated enter and interfering with business.
“Whilst we support everyone’s right to free speech we certainly do not tolerate violence or unlawful activity,” Newcastle police district commander, superintendent Kylie Endemi said according to the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.