Protesters stop work at Maules Creek mine site, again

Construction at Whitehaven Coal’s Maules Creek mine has once again been disrupted this morning as hundreds of protesters descended on the site.

Police have been called after protesters mobilised over night to set up huge tripods aimed at halting construction.

According to sources on the ground 15 machines have been immobilised due to the action.

Having lost a court case which would have prevented the $767 million project from going ahead, environmentalists have ramped up their fight against Whitehaven coal and its project.

Activists say if the mine goes ahead it will destroy the Leard State Forest, affect water and force farmers off their land.

More than 10 people have been arrested since construction at the site commenced on January 13.

 “We’ll be continuing to take action and remain in the forest until we can protect it,” a spokesperson for Front Line Action on Coal said.

Activists say the mine was approved based on false and misleading information, with Environment Minister Greg Hunt refusing to release an independent review of biodiversity offsets.

The group is calling on Hunt to revoke approval of the mine.

"It's pretty clear that that is what's occurred, that… the decision to approve this mine was based on mistruths being put forward by Whitehaven,” spokesperson Georgina Woods said.

Traditional Owners are also opposed to the project and say Whitehaven have not properly assessed the "culturally significant forest, artefacts and cultural values".

Whitehaven have previously called protests “a nuisance” and vowed to go ahead with the development of the project.

“Our primary concern is that any protest activity is carried out lawfully and does not endanger the safety of mine employees or emergency service personnel,” the company said.
















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