04 Mar 2014

Statement by the Minerals Council of Australia and the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association

Australia’s resources industry is calling on The Greens and the Lock the Gate Alliance to denounce civil disobedience action at work sites across the country before someone is seriously injured.

The APPEA and MCA recognise there is legitimate interest among landholders and communities on how resources are produced. Those issues are best addressed through open and transparent dialogue based on facts rather than through fear and threatening behaviour.

In recent weeks we’ve witnessed protesters chain themselves to vehicles, dangle from machinery dressed as bats, lie in the path of vehicles and intimidate landholders who are happy to have exploration take place on their properties.

In Bentley, in the Richmond Valley of northern NSW, there are reports today that anti-gas activists have installed steel spikes at the entrance to a dairy farmer’s property and on previous occasions have welded his entrance gate shut.

Yet the Greens continue to openly endorse civil disobedience classes as part of an untruthful campaign that claims to protect the rights of farmers.

Apart from dangers to life and property, such campaigns prevent workers from getting to jobs that support their families and drain police resources from where they’re needed most.

Instead of trying to demonise Australia’s resource industry the Greens have an opportunity today to show leadership, debate policy on fact, not emotion, and stop civil disobedience.

Media contact: Chris Ward (APPEA) 0408 033 422 or Ben Mitchell (MCA) 0419 850 212

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