Special Screening at Fay’s Twin Cinema
Monday, 7 December 2015 6:30PM – 8:46PM
Milligan St & Oxley St., Taree, NSW,
$20.00 ticket price
bookings online at https://www.tugg.com/events/76594
One Mining Company, a 965 day blockade, over 300 voluntary arrests, a State Forest home to 396 Species of native fauna and flora, 34 of which are endangered. What is this all about?
Told in a collective narrative of first person accounts with characters that thread throughout the film. Black Hole
is told over the period from 2013 to the present moment.
The stakes are high; water security, agricultural land, endangered flora, fauna and significant indigenous cultural sites. We meet key figures in the establishment of the campaign against the mine and their overview sets the tone.
After 560 days embedded in the forest, the now growing number of campaigners are given a move on order by local council. Local farmer Cliff Wallace invites the blockade onto his farm called ‘Wando’. Cliff knows what’s at risk and the impact of how a coal mine can change the fabric of a once quiet community.
The intensity of FLAC’s ongoing civil disobedience is in contrast with the ways of the Gomeroi Indigenous Community. The Gomeroi battle Whitehaven Coal through ongoing court actions and political lobbying. Their plight of being denied access to country has fractured the Gomeroi nation.
The grief and loss that we see of the Gomeroi, farmers, locals and campaigners does not diminish an ultimately successful campaign. It becomes greater than saving the Leard State Forest. The birth of a divestment campaign has created a movement that questions our addiction to coal and continual approval by State and Federal Governments in allowing the construction of greenfield coal mines in Australia.
examines the future of coal, corporate responsibility and the rights governments afford to people vs polluters.
MCWAG Public Meeting Thursday July 30th 6.30 for 7.00pm
Taree Uniting Church Hall, Albert Street, Taree
KEN JOHNSON OAM
THE GLOUCESTER PROJECT
The Gloucester Project was set up develop an alternative economic model to the fossil fuel economy being promoted by governments on behalf of coal and CSG corporations. Over half a decade, TGP has won awards and government funding for aspects of its regional economic development model. TGP has demonstrated aspects of its program at its well known Tucker Patch Demonstration Horticultural Farm in Gloucester.
Because it has now been recognised as offering a viable socio-economic alternative to the heavily promoted fossil fuel economy, governments have now ceased funding TGP’s further development.
Last year TGP’s president, Ken Johnson, gave a presentation at the Australian Regional Development Conference. It it he showed how TGP’s economic development model related to the economic needs of Gloucester and NSW North Coast regions. This is not just to provide a better alternative to the proposed CSG invasion, but to prepare us and our state for the massive changes predicted by climate and other economic projections. He has been invited to make a further report to this year’s Australian Regional Development Conference.
At MCWAG’s meeting on Thursday 30th July, Ken and Marnie Johnson will be describing TGP’s program. They will also be describing how TGP’s program can assist to counter current plans to turn our regions into sacrifice zones for the fossil fuel corporations. They will be presenting the position that Gloucester and the NSW North Coast are not only justified in defending their regions from the fossil fuel industry’s destructive processes, but that our regions are vitally needed to develop our food production and distribution capacity as climatic and economic conditions damage more seriously affected regions.
The discussion will range from information about TGP’s model, the additional strategies that will become available to us, and the new allies that can be brought into the fight.
Congratulations to Julie Lyford, Chair of Groundswell Gloucester. Julie was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in the Queens Birthday Honours, for services to local government and the community.
Well deserved recognition for a committed and seasoned campaigner for community justice and democracy.
Excellent work Julie!
(It is also encouraging to believe that Her Majesty the Queen may now be aware of the threats to Gloucester!).
A big thank you to 2 BOB Radio (104.7 FM) for the informative and colourful 24th Envirofair last Saturday. This World Environment Day event has become one of the leading community events in the Manning.
Thanks also to all our volunteers who helped out on the MCWAG Envirofair stall in Taree Park.
It was a great day, the weather was kind and there was plenty of interest from the community in learning more about the perils of CSG.
We can expect to see more people looking elegant in their MANNING RIVER GUARDIAN t-shirts, more NO TRESPASS signs on farm gates to keep out exploration and mining companies and more NO COAL SEAM GAS” bumper stickers.
All these are now available through the MCWAG Shop.
For years, local communities in Northern NSW have been fighting AGL to protect the rivers and farmland of Gloucester from coal seam gas mining. This could be our chance to stop fracking in Gloucester forever.
When AGL’s new CEO Andrew Vesey started in February this year, GetUp members and our allies at Lock the Gate, Groundswell Gloucester, and Land Water Future were ready with a welcome message. Together, we greeted Mr Vesey with a 20,000 strong petition asking him to shut down AGL’s coal seam gas operations in Gloucester.
A few days later Vesey announced a comprehensive review into all of AGL’s CSG mining. A sign that he was was feeling the pressure from communities concerned about the unacceptable threat that coal seam gas mining poses to our prime agricultural land and our water.
This week, AGL announced they will extend the period to decide the fate of the project.1 Which means we now have six months to convince Mr Vesey to protect Gloucester from the dangers of CSG once and for all.
AGL’s Gloucester project has been a disaster right from the start. AGL have dumped tainted coal seam gas water from Gloucester into Newcastle’s water network despite being denied permission from Hunter Water.2 Large fluctuations in groundwater levels have been detected near their wells.3 They even had their licence temporarily suspended after hazardous BTEX chemicals were detected in two wells.4
But, despite all this, the NSW Government has given AGL the all clear to continue operations, and this week AGL announced they’ll be restarting the pilot wells in Gloucester. This means they’ll spend the next six months drilling in these four accident-prone wells to determine whether to open up a field of one hundred and ten wells.
The stakes couldn’t be higher for Gloucester or the future of CSG mining in NSW. One leading analyst at Citi has already said, “It’s not worth risking AGL’s brand for a Gloucester development.”5 Simply put, the project is on the ropes. Right now, Mr Vesey is frantically trying to work out whether the strength of our opposition is strong enough to abandon the project.
Over 30,000 GetUp members have already called on Mr Vesey to shut AGL’s Gloucester project down, including 9091 AGL customers, 772 shareholders and 165 AGL employees.
That’s right – even people who receive a paycheck from AGL appreciate that the company’s desire for profit shouldn’t come before the protection of land and water that’s crucial for the future food security of all Australians.
We know it won’t be an easy fight – the coal seam gas industry has done an excellent job of staffing their industry with well-connected policy-makers. Earlier this week a Sydney Morning Herald investigation revealed the disturbing number of former politicians from Labor, Liberal and National parties who now work on behalf of the big coal seam gas companies.6
It’s time to let AGL and the NSW government know we want them to shut down CSG.
Thanks for all that you do,
Adam and Sam R, for the GetUp team
P.S. Once you sign the petition, you can take the next step by switching your energy provider away from AGL to our partner, Powershop. 11,000 GetUp members have already switched, and Credit Suisse has found that if 30,000 people switch their power away from AGL, it would cost the company $100 million.7 Taking your custom away from AGL helps to drive home the message that as long as they continue their CSG activities in NSW, not only will they lose the PR battle, but also their profits and customers too. Sign the petition and then learn more about switching here: www.getup.org.au/nofracking
 AGL releases ‘roadmap’ to energy sustainability, ABC, 26 May 2015.
 EPA investigation into discharge of treated flow back water into Hunter Water sewer network, Hunter Water media release, 22 January 2015.
 Shifting ground water levels add to AGL’s CSG doubts, Sydney Morning Herald, 27 January 2015.
 AGL faces delays, additional conditions after BTEX chemicals detected, Sydney Morning Herald, 28 January 2015.
 Upstream gas restructure, a material prize worth chasing, Citiresearch, 18 February 2015.
 Industry snaps up staff with top connections, Sydney Morning Herald, 25 May 2015.
 Credit Suisse analysis, July 2014; Credit Suisse Research and Analytics, AGL Energy – I can see clearly now, 19 March 2015; Citi Research, 18 February 2015.
GetUp is an independent, not-for-profit community campaigning group. We use new technology to empower Australians to have their say on important national issues. We receive no political party or government funding, and every campaign we run is entirely supported by voluntary donations. If you’d like to contribute to help fund GetUp’s work, please donate now! To unsubscribe from GetUp, please click here.
Our team acknowledges that we meet and work on the land of the Gadigal people of the Eora Nation. We wish to pay respect to their Elders – past, present and future – and acknowledge the important role all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people continue to play within Australia and the GetUp community.
Authorised by Sam Mclean, Level 14, 338 Pitt Street, Sydney NSW 2000.
Just a reminder about our forthcoming meeting next Thursday 28th May starting at 6.30pm at the Uniting Church Auditorium in Albert Street, Taree.
Mr Brendan Guiney, Acting General Manager of Mid Coast Water, will speak to our group about the organisation’s Our Water Our Future project. This is an open meeting, so the general public is welcome to attend. The Mayor and Councillors of Greater Taree have been invited to join us.
Mid Coast Water is reviewing their long term strategy for water resources in our region and they want the community to join the conversation about water. They want to know what it means to us all, and what we think are the important issues for the future.
The talk will include a powerpoint presentation and there will be an opportunity for questions afterwards.
Please come along and bring your friends and family too. Our water is important to all of us.
Secretary, MCWAG Inc.
Link below to the EPA’s media release which came out today (Tuesday 19th) regarding their investigations into the BTEX detected at Waukivory. Please note that it’s taken them approximately 3 months to do these investigations. I wrote to the company secretary of AGL last night (Monday) to ask if they had received the EPA’s report. They probably had!
More to come on this, I think….