Lock the Gate to shut down Acland coal dump

Published: February 19, 2012

The Lock the Gate movement will be shutting down the coal loading facility of New Hope Coal's Acland mine tomorrow (Monday 20 February).

The Lock the Gate Alliance is planning to march on the Acland mine coal dump situated at the edge of the Jondaryan township. This facility has been accused by Jondaryan residents of polluting their town and causing serious health problems.

The march will be headed by radio broadcaster, Alan Jones, Drew Hutton, president of the Lock the Gate Alliance, and many other prominent Queenslanders. These include Bob Katter, Aidan McLindon, Greens Senator Larissa Waters, Greens state spokesperson Libby Connors and other prominent Queenslanders.

A large crowd of farmers and Lock the Gate supporters will also be marching.

It will start with a rally at the edge of the township and then the gathering will march down the road to the coal dump entrance. Some marchers will be on horseback, others in horse and buggy.

Some farmers will be pushing wheelbarrows full of fruit and vegetables symbolising the need to protect agricultural land from mining.

A blockade will then be set up at the entrance to the coal dump, preventing entry by trucks bringing coal from New Hope Coal's Acland mine which is a couple of kilometres away.

The police have said there will be no arrests during the march but have not ruled out taking action if coal trucks are blocked at the entrance.

The marchers will be calling for the protection of food and water security, environmentally sensitive areas, the health of local communities and cultural heritage from the impacts of coal and coal seam gas – starting with rejecting the proposed stage 3 expansion of the Acland mine.

Details of the march and blockade…..

When:      12 noon, Monday 20 February
Where:     Warrego Highway, Jondaryan (on the eastern edge of the township)

"We will be marching to focus on the ugliest and most obvious symbol of New Hope's Acland coal mine but make no mistake, we want to ensure that the proposed stage 3 development of this mine never gets approved and that all the parties address the issue of inappropriate mining," Mr Hutton said.

"The dust from this dump has made life a misery for the people of Jondaryan but the planned expansion of the Acland mine will also have a disastrous effect on the entire region," Mr Faulkner said.

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