Activists who chained themselves to coal port machinery have been arrested.
Two activists at Port Kembla have been arrested after they scaled coal loaders and unfurled a small banner decrying coal; in Newcastle three protestors who locked themselves to conveyors have been arrested; while police are reportedly currently on scene where a man is suspended from an overhead cable running over rail lines in an effort to stop coal haulage trains.
The people were part of a wide scale action carried out at the cities’ ports to protest coal, as they called for a global moratorium on new coal mines on the back of the Paris Climate Change talks.
“The actions at Brisbane, Newcastle and Port Kembla are an escalation of a global push for a moratorium on new coal mines, as the effects of climate change are felt by people around the country and around the world,” associated group Rise Up stated in an official release.
Anti-coal groups 350.org and Front Line Action on Coal also took part in the event.
One of the activists, Vanessa Wiebford, who locked herself to a conveyor at Newcastle’s coal port, said, "Because Newcastle is home to the world’s largest coal port, our community lives with the immediate threats of having coal at our doorstep.”
“The coal industry is responsible for leaving our residents choking on coal dust and diesel fumes every day while it exports global warming and health problems to the world."
In Brisbane, additional activists attached themselves to rail tracks in an effort to halt coal haul trains.
“If Australian Governments will not intervene, we will intervene ourselves,” one of the activists stated.