Several hundred people rallied and marched at Jondaryan, west of Toowoomba, on February 20 to protest against moves by New Hope Coal to expand its coalmine at nearby Acland.
Speakers at the rally were from an unusual range of backgrounds, including radio shock jock Alan Jones, maverick federal MP Bob Katter, Greens Senator Larissa Waters and local farmers. Lock the Gate Alliance president Drew Hutton chaired the rally.
Residents, including local landowner Tanya Plant, say they are concerned that the noise and dust from the New Hope coalmine is affecting the health of their children. She told the January 28 Australian: "It has been worrying to have one of our children coughing a lot for months. We are concerned about those really small particles, as well as things like heavy metals."
Waters said: “We are behind the community on both the coal and coal seam gas issues. There should be no coalmines on farmland, and no new coalmines at all. We will win this together."