Climate change activists in solidarity with striking coal workers

On Wednesday 8th July, environmental activists joined the picket line at the Hazelwood coal fired power station as part of the annual Students of Sustainability conference. Defying all dietary stereotypes, the Mining & Energy division of the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) cooked a vegetarian BBQ for the students.

Emergency services workers at Hazelwood have been on strike for three months now, demanding better pay and safer conditions. The workers are paid barely more than minimum wage for jobs that require life saving skills. Safety conditions badly need to be overhauled at Hazelwood, which was supposed to be decommissioned in 2005. The closure of Hazelwood is inevitable, for both reasons of workers' safety and climate change. This presents a huge opportunity for a renewables sector that is not based on workers' exploitation, but on workers control.

The SoS contingent to the Hazelwood picket line was a significant exercise in building solidarity between workers and environmentalists, who the right wing press, governments and industry love to pit against each other. On Wednesday 8th July, it was clear that the interests of climate change activists and power workers are aligned. There'll be no jobs on a dead planet, and there'll be better workplace conditions in a renewables sector with workers control!

More info: call Liz, 0402 657 392