We’re coming: Activists’ warning to contractors

 

Businesses who take on work for Adani are in the firing line, as a "massive influx" of activists travel to central Queensland prepared to "physically stand in the way of machinery".

Conservation groups are also sifting through the mining giant's environmental approvals for legal holes that could be used to drag the Carmichael mine project back to the courts.

Police in Townsville and Bowen, which has been a hotbed for protest activity near the Adani-operated Abbot Point port for years, said they were bracing for the influx of protesters.

It comes after Adani on Thursday cleared its final environmental hurdle allowing construction to begin at its $2 billion, 10 million tonne per annum Carmichael mine.

Activists, including those from anti-coal group Frontline Action on Coal (FLAC) were already on the ground in Townsville yesterday, picketing Townsville MP Scott Stewart's office armed with signs, a truck powered by vegetable fuel and a ukulele.

A FLAC spokeswoman said the group was preparing for a "massive influx" of activists into Central Queensland.

 

Anti-Adani protesters outside Townsville MP Scott Stewart's office on Friday, June 14. Picture: Madura McCormack
Anti-Adani protesters outside Townsville MP Scott Stewart's office on Friday, June 14. Picture: Madura McCormack

 

"Many are prepared to physically stand in the way of machinery in what has been described as the fight of a generation," the spokeswoman said.

In a veiled threat, Galilee Blockade spokesman Ben Pennings warned contractors could be in the firing line of protesters.

"Whoever gets contracted to build the Adani mine is a brave company indeed," he said.

"Sustained nonviolent tactics like strikes, boycotts, street occupations and blockades will communicate our refusal to ever allow thermal coal mining in the Galilee Basin."

Clermont Crane Hire supplies cranes to Adani and Ramo Imsirovic, who co-owns the business with his brother Salih, said they would take protest action in their stride and work with Adani and police to monitor the situation.

"It would concern everybody and anybody, I don't want to see people or equipment harmed or damaged in any way shape or form," Mr Imsirovic said.

Australian Conservation Foundation Stop Adani campaigner Christian Slattery said the organisation would be scrutinising Adani's approved groundwater and black-throated finch management plans.

Adani chief executive Lucas Dow said its environmental plans stood up "to the rigours" of the CSIRO and GeoScience Australia.

"We've considered the risk but ultimately we are not concerned," he said.

"We just want to get on with the job now of being able to create jobs for thousands of people in Townsville and Rockhampton and Central Queensland."

Bowen station officer in charge Acting Senior Sergeant Craig McConnel said police were bracing for an increase in protester activity and groups would be monitored and responded to accordingly.

Townsville Tactical Crime Squad officer in charge Senior Sergeant Jason Shepherd said all 22 officers in his unit were trained to deal with protest activity.

Officers from both the TCS and Bowen have been trained in cutting off improvised devices known as "sleeping dragons" that protesters use to chain themselves to rail lines and other infrastructure.



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