A small but vocal group of people gathered outside the Land and Environment Court in Sydney on August 20 to protest against Rio Tinto’s plans to extend its Mount Thorley Warkworth coalmine near Bulga, in Singleton Shire in the NSW Hunter Valley. The protesters held banners saying “Don’t bugger Bulga”, “Stop coal and gas destroying NSW” and “Save the Warkworth Sands Woodlands”, while they chanted slogans such as “Rack off Rio Tinto.”
OK, nobody panic or anything, but it seems another key plank in Gina Rinehart's plot to destroy the Earth has been given the green light. Gina Rinehart's multibillion-dollar Alpha coal mine and rail project in central Queensland has been granted federal government approval, ABC.net.au said on August 23.
The South Australian Feminist Collective (SAFC) brings together feminists from different backgrounds. It holds regular meetings and forums on issues relating to women in Australia today. The collective held a forum on reproductive rights last month, which focussed on the current legislation concerning abortion in South Australia. Abortion is still on the criminal code in South Australia.
Occupy La Trobe, formed by La Trobe University students to fight cuts proposed to the Faculty of Humanities and Social Services (HUSS), published the statement below from the Stop the HUSS Cuts Collective on August 23. * * *
Author and filmmaker John Pilger sent the speech below to be read out at an August 19 protest outside the Ecuadorian embassy in London to defend Julian Assange. * * * I have known Julian since he came to London and gave the world vital information about Afghanistan and Iraq, which governments had suppressed and denied.
The Coal Terminal Action Group hosted a public forum on August 21, with several expert speakers opposing the proposed fourth coal loader for Newcastle, known as the “T4”. Georgina Woods, senior climate campaigner with Greenpeace Australia Pacific, said T4 was not “just another coal terminal … It is part of a long process of continual expansion that will more than double coal exports with an extra 120 million tonnes and 107 extra trains per day and destroy an internationally listed wetlands.
Organisers of an Adelaide rally to support WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange released the statement below on August 22. * * * Supporters of Julian Assange have organised a protest today (Wednesday, 21st August) at 5pm at Parliament House. The rally is one of many protests that have already taken place around Australia after the decision of the UK government to deny Julian Assange safe passage to Ecuador.
About 200 people rallied against La Trobe University executives’ massive cuts to the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences on August 22. Protesters occupied the Agora at La Trobe’s Bundoora campus in support of a hunger strike against the cuts. They occupied the campus overnight. The cuts will result in hundreds of subjects being slashed, entire areas of study being abolished and at least 41 job losses. A mass meeting of staff and students in July passed a resolution demanding all cuts be withdrawn.
The Socialist Alliance NSW released the statement below on August 21. * * * “Parramatta City Council has a civic responsibility to respond urgently to the report from the Australian Council of Social Services (ACOSS) that the lack of affordable housing has reached crisis levels”, said Kerryn Williams, a Socialist Alliance candidate for the Woodville ward in the Parramatta council election.
One hundred and fifty people attended a lively conference held over August 18-19 titled “Fidel in the 21st century: his contribution and ideas for a better world”. The event examined the inspiring life and historic political contribution of former Cuban President Fidel Castro. The conference was organised by the Latin America Social Forum (LASF), the Australia-Cuba Friendship Society, the Cuba Solidarity Committee (Western Suburbs), and the Free the Cuba Five Committee, with the support of the Cuban Embassy and the Cuban Institute for Friendship with the Peoples (ICAP).
Australian historian Humphrey McQueen gave the speech below at an August 17 pro-WikiLeaks protest outside the British High Commission, Canberra.
Residents of Fullerton Cove, on the outskirts of Newcastle, set up a blockade on Monday 20 August to prevent Dart Energy from drilling two coal seam gas pilot wells that are currently under construction.