By Tim Stewart — Movies, musicals, bush meetings and speaking tours continue to characterise the campaign against coal seam gas (CSG).
The grassroots campaign against coal seam gas mining appears to have won important ground, making it onto the popular ABC program Gruen Transfer and as a dedicated feature launched on the ABC news website on November 24. Right-wing shock-jock Alan Jones has also held his own October 19 address to the National Press Club on the dangers of CSG to “food security”, calling the buying up of farm land by CSG companies “legalised theft”.
In an attempt to “create our own moment and message” internet-based environment coalition Moving Planet declared September 24 a “day to move beyond fossil fuels — to demand solutions to the environment crisis”. Organised by the Australian Youth Climate Coalition (AYCC), the headline activities promoted in Australia were human sign making and riding bicycles in loops around Parliament House in Canberra.
[This is the speech delivered at the Second International Conference on the Victims of Agent Orange in Hanoi, August 8-9, by AOJ-AVSN representative Allen Myers. Myers was a US GI active in resisting against the US war on Vietnam in the 1960s and was court-martialled twice for his activism.
Anger against coal seam gas (CSG) mining, which has erupted into significant street protests over the past six months, has now spilled into parliament. A federal Senate committee accused company representatives of “wordsmithing” their way around difficult questions and coming to the conclusion that “there are no rules” and “there are no answers” about how to deal with intractable waste problems caused by CSG mining.
The Vietnamese Association for Victims of Agent Orange/Dioxin (VAVA) hosted the Second International Conference of Victims of Agent Orange/Dioxin in Hanoi August 8-9. Attending the conference were participants from more than 20 countries and 30 organisations, including Agent Orange victims, victims of other toxic chemicals, scientists, lawyers and social activists. The conference coincided with an important historical event, the 50th anniversary of the first spraying of the toxic chemical Agent Orange, on August 10, 1961, by US forces in Vietnam.
Zack Furness is the author of One Less Car: Bicycling and the politics of automobility (Temple University Press, 2010). He was interviewed via email by Jon Lamb.
As the details of its long-awaited “carbon tax” package were announced, Julia Gillard’s Labor government plummeted in popularity. Australia faces the real possibility of a landslide victory at the next election for the conservative Coalition under the leadership of the notorious reactionary Tony Abbott.