Friends of the Earth take on mega coal mine in court

On the eve of a court hearing due in Brisbane on August 29-31, Friends of the Earth International called on Swiss mining giant Xstrata's shareholders and investors to act to stop Xstrata's massive 'Mega Coal Mine' project in Australia. Research from climate change experts released this week shows that coal mines and subsequent carbon emissions will accelerate the loss of the Great Barrier Reef resulting in jobs losses and massive impacts on the Queensland economy.

Media Release
Date 29 August 2011
Coal mine linked to accelerated loss of Great Barrier Reef

Judge rules in favour of Hunter Valley coal protesters

Charges were dismissed against 49 climate activists under a section 10 ruling by an East Maitland Court magistrate yesterday. The protesters had committed non-violent civil disobedience at a climate camp against a new coal fired power station being built in the Hunter Valley in December 2010. The section 10 ruling means they have no conviction recorded, no criminal record and their fines dropped.


World Bank dirty investments fueling climate change claims Friends of the Earth report

Amid the latest UN climate talks taking place in Bonn Germany Friends of the Earth International have released a report highly critical of the role of the World Bank in continuing to fund dirty energy investment in developing countries and continuing to push carbon markets and offset programs which essentially privatise developing country forests in the process of generating carbon offsets.

The World Bank was made interim trustee of the new Green Climate Fund in December 2010 in Cancun. The Fund was established to assist developing countries to adapt to the impacts of global warming.

Related: Interview with Sarah-Jayne Clifton, coordinator of the Climate Justice and Energy Program of Friends of the Earth International | Follow the Bonn climate talks: Adopt a Negotiator Project; Climate Action Network; Friends of the Earth.

Greenpeace targets BHP Billiton over carbon pollution

A Busy week for the activists of Greenpeace Australia who did a banner drop outside BHP Billiton headquarters in Melbourne on Monday and followed it up midweek with erecting a Pollution Tax Collection Point at BHP’s Mount Arthur Mine in the Hunter Valley holding up a BHP coal train temporarily.

Youtube Video: BHP Billiton: The Polluter must Pay

Price on Carbon: Frequently Asked Questions

Q: I can’t afford an increased price of living so I’m scared of a big new tax on everything.

A: The carbon price will affect 1000 of Australia’s biggest polluters - individuals will not be taxed. Some of the costs will be passed on to consumers so there will be an increase in some of our lifestyle choices. However millions of households will in fact be better off financially through compensation.

Q: Compensation removes the incentive to reduce consumption of electricity.

Retreating on climate policy - Victorian Government stops discussions on Hazelwood closure

While all eyes focused on Canberra and the Federal Budget this week, the Victorian Government quietly announced that all discussions have been discontinued on retiring all or part of the Hazelwood brown coal fired power station. Environment groups strongly criticised the decision.

"Sadly, what this announcement seems to confirm is that the Coalition government has absolutely no plan to reduce greenhouse emissions in the state. Although environmental groups were unanimous in demanding the full closure and replacement of the ageing and dirty Hazelwood power station, the promised partial closure would have been a good step in the right direction" said Friends of the Earth campaigns co-ordinator, Cam Walker.


Government foyer occupied to stop new Victorian coal power station

A group of five climate protesters walked into the foyer of the Victorian State Government ministerial offices at 1 Treasury place and locked on to a ladder. Outside the building another 100 protesters gathered. The protest called for the withdrawal of funding for HRL's proposed new coal fired power station in the Latrobe Valley.


Legal challenge against new Xstrata coal mine at Wandoan

Late last week Friends of the Earth Brisbane lodged an objection in the Queensland Land Court against development of a massive open cut coal mine proposed by Xstrata Coal for west of Wandoan in South West Queensland, citing the contribution this mine will make to severe weather events through greenhouse gas emissions contributing to climate change.


Fines for 73 climate change activists protesting proposed power station

The Muswellbrook Local Court today was crammed with activists. In the largest single court appearance for an Australian climate protest 73 people faced trespass charges for a mass civil disobedience protest on December 5, 2010. They were each fined $250 by the court.