Make the Call: It’s Time to Abandon the Bylong Mine



The South Korean Government (Republic of Korea) is the majority owner of KEPCO, the company behind the proposed Bylong Coal Project.  Therefore, they have a big say in what happens next with the project.

We want to send them a strong message via the South Korean Embassy here, encouraging them to abandon the project and sell the land back to agriculture.

Ring: 02 62704100

Note: The embassy closes for lunch between 12.30 pm and 1.30 pm

Please be very polite and calm and provide your name.  Ask for your message to be passed directly to the Ambassador and to the relevant minister in Korea. You can let us know how the call went on the feedback
form below.

Here are some points you might like to make:

  • You strongly support South Korea’s moves to shift from coal power to renewables and it is clear that extracting 124 million tonnes of thermal coal from Bylong up until 2045 is incompatible with that.
  • It would be a very positive move for KEPCO to now withdraw completely from the Bylong coal project, abandoning the exploration licences and selling the land for agriculture so Bylong can become a hub for regenerative farming.
  • It would be financially reckless to keep pursuing a project that has already been rejected and will almost certainly just result in the Korean Government throwing good money after bad.
  • You encourage the Embassy to meet with farmers affected by the Bylong project and Lock the Gate who have recently requested a meeting.

Please note that the Korean Government is the majority owner of KEPCO. If Embassy staff tell you that KEPCO make their own decisions, independent of Government, please hold your ground and ask the Government to say ‘no’ to this project. Reiterate that a majority owner’s views are powerful and will always be heard.

  • Gareth Smith
    commented 2019-11-06 14:21:01 +1100
    My contact listened without interruption and assured me our message would be passed on to the ambassador and to the relevant government minister. I started the conversation by saying we had visited S Korea several times and loved the hospitality and culture of the Korean people.
  • David Cowie
    commented 2019-10-24 10:01:38 +1100
    The Embassy staff were very apologetic that he personally could do nothing and acknowledged the many calls it has received. The staffmember with whom I spoke said he would pass on my concerns regarding the Bylong Valley coal project.
  • Marcia Grace
    commented 2019-10-18 16:46:57 +1100
    Okay… the reception person said they had had quite a few calls about this. He was a bit vague about the message … but said he would pass on my objections…I asked for their email… he saud I could find it on google… but I found it down this page!
  • Nicola Chirlian
    commented 2019-10-18 16:13:02 +1100
    Very politely – assured me that my words would be passed onto the Ambassador, and suggested that we also write to the ambassador at australia@mofa.go.kr
  • Michael Rynn
    commented 2019-10-18 15:26:30 +1100
    I spoke to the nice receptionist, and more more less read out half dozen sentences I had typed, asking that economic growth through coal mining be abandoned, food production be protected, and asked that my name, and number be passed on.
  • Graeme Healy
    commented 2019-10-18 11:32:10 +1100
    I spoke with the receptionist who received my call politely and agreed to pass my message on to the Ambassador and relevant Minister.
  • Anita Cillessen
    commented 2019-10-17 16:40:14 +1100
    I rang & pressed for English to be spoken – the receptionist was very helpful & assured me that she would pass these very important points onto the Ambassador & the relevant minister in Korea. All the above points were re-iterated. Thanks.
  • Ian Onley
    commented 2019-10-17 11:26:00 +1100
    The receptionist seemed to be well aware of what I was talking about. I explained we cannot open any new coal mines and I would like my message to be passed on to the Ambassador. I suggested I would welcome Korea operating renewable energy projects in Australia but we definitely cannot have any new coal or gas mines anywhere in the world.
  • harry johnson
    commented 2019-10-16 16:58:07 +1100
    Ok. The embassy has received 100 coal mine calls today.
  • Simone van Hattem
    commented 2019-10-16 16:30:35 +1100
    Made the call at 4.30pm, got through to a male receptionist who was polite and said they had received around 100 calls. I made some of the points above and didn’t take more of his time, knowing (partly from below) how may calls have been made and how many people took the time to explain why and what the issue is.
  • David Passmore
    commented 2019-10-16 16:28:23 +1100
    Very well, he already knew why I was calling and said he would pass it on to his superior and said everyone who had called was very polite, though the calls were distracting.
  • Doro Babeck
    commented 2019-10-16 16:15:46 +1100
    The person taking my call said immediately, that they already hat over 100 ppl calling just today about the Bylong mine! So he didn’t really want to talk about it any more, but i idid manage to ask him, whether he had been to the Bylong valley himself to see what a special area it is. He declined to which i urged him to take a trip there and see for himself how beautiful it is and how a mine is just the wrong development for the valley. I also told him that i support Korea moving away from coal power to renewables and how much i liked Korea when I traveled there a few years ago. From my experience there, I told him, i could gather that people have a real appreciation for nature and that is the same for people here. He then cut me off and said he would pass my message on to the ambassador.
  • Lee Rodger
    commented 2019-10-16 16:12:26 +1100
    very well they were very polite, she said she been getting lots of calls today
  • Annie Kia
    commented 2019-10-16 16:08:11 +1100
    Young woman answered in Reception. She did not give much away.. Having politely made my points I asked if she would convey them to the Ambassador, to which she said Yes.
  • Cary Rasmussen
    commented 2019-10-16 16:08:05 +1100
    After automatic answering, I was shunted to an unanswered phone
  • Dr G and Helen Manos
    commented 2019-10-16 16:00:06 +1100
    The ambassador’s assistant tried to Palm me off by saying 100 Australians had called. I spoke quietly and firmly, saying the ALP and tne Greens have passed a climate catastrophe bill, Aussies will protest the mine, KEPCO must pull out now or face more string protests. I spoke for myself and husband, Dr George Manos
  • Robert Skappel
    commented 2019-10-16 15:36:06 +1100
    They told me that they had received over 60 calls today & they would pass on the message !
  • Maurice Jones
    commented 2019-10-16 15:34:02 +1100
    Took phone option 3 for Economic Section. No answer then click so it probably went elsewhere.

    PLEASANT WOMAN POLITELY RECORDED MESSAGE FOR THE AMBASSADOR/GOVERNMENT – from a retired Senior Sydney CBD Banker very familiar with the Valley – and supporter of Korea’s push to renewables.

    Made all the points and knowledge of recent refusal to mine.

    She did not mention having had any other calls such as mine. Assured me what I’d said would be passed on.

    Thanked her.

    Wed 16/10/19 3.20pm
  • Susan Petch
    commented 2019-10-16 15:33:03 +1100
    Sent an email to the aforementioned address.
  • Ivan Ballin
    commented 2019-10-16 15:04:11 +1100
    Further note:

    I have emailed my concerns to:


    australia@mofa.go.kr


    I am sure they will also be counting emails as well as phone calls.

    I enclosed my residential address, phone number and email contact.

    I ensured the tone of my email was both firm and respectful.
  • Susan Brown
    commented 2019-10-16 14:55:08 +1100
    I was told that they have had in the region of sixty phone calls today about this and he will try to pass my message upwards. He was quite polite, telling me that he knows what I am going to say. I have no confidence that my message will go anywhere, but I tried.
  • Ivan Ballin
    commented 2019-10-16 14:38:54 +1100
    Spoke to a male person at reception, who told me he has “had the same phone call 50 times today.”

    I replied – “Oh, that is good, isn’t it. It shows that people are really, really keen to ensure this project is cancelled.”

    He attempted to cut me short, as if he had noted the message, so I said to him “Please make sure this message does go to the Ambassador and to the South Korean Government, because this is really important to me.”

    I told him I live right next door to the Bylong Valley, and that this land should be preserved for sustainable farming."

    I told him “The South Korean position is that they will source energy from renewable sources, so that means coal mining is not compatible with that position.”

    I closed with asking him to put my request in writing and make sure the Ambassador and the South Korean Government do get my message.

    I used the words ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ politely, and the call was received cordially.
  • Michael Blockey
    commented 2019-10-16 14:11:48 +1100
    They listened politely!
  • Simone Wilks
    commented 2019-10-16 13:55:13 +1100
    Very polite receptionist.

    After expressing my concerns I offered my details, but he said that he had noted all the points of concern and no personal info was required.
  • Cath Elderton
    commented 2019-10-16 13:38:10 +1100
    I rang 1.30 pm on the 16th; The person who received the call said he had had some 100 calls this morning and he would pass the message on, though I didn’t quite understand to whom. He was polite, though seemed a tired of phone calls.
  • Simone Wilks
    commented 2019-10-16 13:16:19 +1100
    They are at lunch until 1.30

    I’ll call back
  • Graeme Palmer
    commented 2019-10-16 13:13:23 +1100
    Made the call, the operator listened politely while I politely advised that I am from Brisbane and am familiar with the Bylong valley.

    While visiting the Capertee Valley in September with three friends we spent time in the Bylong valley and were astounded at it’s beauty and amazed by the fact that it is a part of the 2nd largest canyon formation in the world – I requested that the valley must be preserved without coal mining damage for people of the world to visit and enjoy. I also reminded her that South Korea is moving away from coal to renewables and that mining coal in the Bylong valley would be incompatible with that policy.

    I requested her to pass on my request to the Korean Minister responsible to not mine coal in the Bylong valley and preserve its natural beauty and leave it’s use soley for nature and some agriculture.

    I offered my name and contact details, however, the operator advised tat she was busy receiving the Bylong calls and requested me to send an email to australia@mofa.go.kr with my request and that she would then pass it on to the Korean Minister responsible.
  • Simone Wilks
    commented 2019-10-16 13:10:46 +1100
    They are at lunch until 1.30

    I’ll call back
  • Simon Clough
    commented 2019-10-16 12:10:39 +1100
    Called reception I suspect the trade option on the phone would be better. I got a very polite brush off and did ask for my message to be passed on to the Government.call to be
  • Jane Morgan
    commented 2019-10-16 12:02:18 +1100
    Spoke with polite secretary -sounded like was typing as I spoke.Menrioned each of the points above

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Content on this site is authorised by Georgina Woods for Lock the Gate Alliance, Lismore NSW.