Anne and her husband recently took a trip to Queensland and of course you just cant avoid coal seam gas mining when you are in western Queensland.
Anne has put her thoughts down on paper and given me permission to print them below along with some of her great pictures ~ you can really feel the emotion in Anne's writing and I can feel how confronting this trip was for her.
Please share this post with any and everyone especially those interested in protecting our land and water from gas mining ~ we really cant eat coal or drink gas.
Thanks Anne for sharing your experience with us ~
I would have probably met some of you at our Community Forum in May. For those who don’t know me. (IM ANNE DEAN)
I’ve been involved in the ANTI CSG movement for a little over 3 years now. My partner and I are new to the Shoalhaven, retiring here 18 months ago. We thought the Shoalhaven was not only the most beautiful area in the country but that CSG mining and fracking wouldn’t be a threat here; and this was a major reason why we retired here from Sydney.
My daughter Melinda Wilson runs the Western Sydney, and Blacktown, No CSG Groups as well as the Protect the Kimberly FB SITE.
I want to speak to you tonight . Not to give you a travelog about the last 2 and a half months we have just spent, driving around Queensland in our caravan. BUT rather, to pass on to you all that we experienced and learned about The Coal & Coal Seam Gas (mining) industry; and the terrible impact it’s having on people and communities in QUEENSLAND. It’s quite HORRIFIC and for us NOT to share our experiences ; is just NOT AN OPTION.
We all need to mobilize and prepare for what is coming our way. AND we need to create a HUGE resistance group to make sure we stop, what is happening in Queensland, happening in our state of New South Wales, and more specifically in our local Shoalhaven
We visited Tara, Chinchilla , Kogan GAS FIELDS. We talked to local people who lived there . They were all happy to tell us about the terrible destruction Coal Seam Gas mining and Fracking has caused to their health & their local area. We weren’t able to meet Debbi Orr because one of her neighbours told us, she was at the hospital , the day we were there ; with her youngest child and new baby, AND that all her six children along with children from 26 OTHER local families; are suffering from contamination that no one can explain; or take responsibility for; but which all started when the CSG drilling started; and is consistent with the symptoms being suffered by children overseas where CoAL SEAM GAS drilling and fracking has been in full production for over a decade.
We saw the Condamine river, which bubbles like a spa, and still no one will take responsibility, telling us it’s a natural occurrence which just happened to start when Coal Seam Gas drilling and Fracking started.
The majority of Coal Seam Gas Mining around Tara, Chinchilla and Kogan is done back from the main roads, along a dirt track, mainly away from view , among the trees, and can only be found by people specifically looking for it
But around Miles, Roma and Wandoan there are drilling Rigs everywhere , massive holding ponds, thousands of pipes stacked everywhere all brazenly visible from the road. It’s absolutely HUGE. And the roads linking all these towns are jam packed with huge industrial mining trucks and water carriers. Which operate 24/7.
We travelled to Mt Isa where the huge coal mine is at the end of the main street in the CBD spewing coal smoke directly onto the population as they go about their daily shopping. The negative health impacts on the people of the town are documented on the internet
We drove to ,Cloncurry, and Bowen, and down the east coast of Queensland..
The saddest experience we had was to drive through Gladstone to Curtis Island. Here there has been no attempt to disguise the absolute desecration and destruction, caused by the mining companies everywhere.
It was such a terrible sight that it brought a tear to my eye.
I could not believe humans could have such little regard for the land, the environment and the planet.
AT Charleville we visited the Cosmos Observatory and saw how the planet evolved. We also looked at the stars and other planets and learned all about space travel.
At Port Macquarie we visited Sea Acres and walked around the tree top walk, learning all about the rainforest and how the vegetation coexists and regenerates.
At Cairns we took a glass bottom boat to Green Island to view the spectacular Great Barrier Reef The world Heritage listed, and UNESCO protected reef, is the most diverse living organism and ecosystem in the world. Mining companies plan to remove 3 million cubic metres of the reef and the sea bed to build the largest coal export terminal worldwide. Unless stopped we are going to lose the worlds most truly precious gem to a temporary & damaging mining solution.
But probably the highlight of our trip would have been the 5 hours we spent at Steve Irwin’s Australia Zoo, while we were at the Sunshine Coast. .. As well as being a tribute to Steve’s , much to short life; it focuses on Steve’s work saving animals and precious wildlife . Not only protecting them, but also ensuring the environment they occupy is kept pristine for them to inhabit and enjoy a future Before the daily midday show in the crocoseum , Bindi, Bob and their mother Terri spoke digitally to the audience on a HUGE screen; against the destruction being caused to the country and the environment by BIG MINING ,.
IT WAS VERY POWERFUL.
Once we reached the Gold Coast I met up with some Lock the Gate friends that I had met through chats on facebook ; and joined them in a peaceful protest in front of local Liberal candidate Steve Ciobo’s office in Cheveron Island Wonderful caring passionate people who have formed a chapter of the Knitting Nannas Against Gas
When we got to Byron Bay we drove 20 kms to Bangalow and attended an “Auzzies Against Fracking” event at the Bangalow Bowling Club . There were over 300 people present . Some I knew from Facebook or the Mayday Rally last year; others I had never met, but they welcomed us; all the way from the Shoalhaven.
IT WAS AN INSPIRATIONAL NIGHT
Artists all entertained for free; Swamp Stompers ,Lil LIL , Kevin Borich , Wolfe Mother, Leo Sayer. Many others spoke by electronic hook up. Celebrities from all fields, stating their ANTi CSG messages on an overhead screen. There were hundreds of them.
I met Dayne Pratzky who stood up and spoke about his life, living in a Gas Field. He told us all he holds a Certificate of Title for a 100 acres property, that is worthless. It was HORRIFIC.
But in spite of the somber message of Coal Seam Gas mining; and Fracking which had united everyone; it was a night of music , dancing and celebration Celebration of community; and the camaraderie that has brought everyone together in this common fight.
ANTI COAL SEAM GAS PEOPLE ARE THE MOST INSPIRATIONAL PEOPLE I HAVE EVER MET.
Across the country; people are forming Knitting Nannas Against Gas Groups. Senior people sitting outside Politicians Offices or Mining Company offices; knitting in yellow and black. Of course when anyone asks them what it’s all about , that person very swiftly receives an Anti CSG flier, or DVD and are asked to sign a petition. The Knitting Nannas are growing from strength to strength and are shortly to release a video about their activities.
Younger people are joining, or forming ‘Gals Against Gas’ or ‘Burlesque Babes’. (Groups) Cheer squads; dressed up and performing dancing routines to promote the Anti CSG.movement.
People are organising concerts, (like the one we attended) picnics, stalls, bike rides, horse rides, human signs and Rallies. All kinds of events to highlight the Anti Coal Seam Gas cause , raise awareness and keep the movement on the boil.
Everywhere we went we saw LOCK THE GATE , No COAL SEAM GAS and Vote 1 GREENS. Signs.
With the recent change of government it is more important than ever that we are united and strong in our resistance, because the new Federal Government is very pro Mining and BIG BUSINESS and has already told us they plan to streamline mining approvals and roll them out as quickly as possible.
We all know that we are the good guys in this battle. The evidence is everywhere about the terrible destruction Coal and Coal Seam Gas mining causes. And we know THAT IF WE ALL stand together UNITED and STRONG; IN THE END WE WILL PREVAIL..
BUT are WE READY? Because if we value our country, state and local region , we definitely need to get ourselves READY…. and QUICKLY.
Thank you very much