A crowd of people have surrounded Whitehaven Coal’s office in Boggabri to protest the impact of the Whitehaven Coal train derailment on farmers.
The group wants Whitehaven to compensate wheat, pulse and cotton farmers for potentially $150 million in losses from the blocking of the rail line and to pay for the cost of the Cox’s Creek bridge reconstruction.
Front Line Action on Coal spokesperson Jonathan Moylan said that the cost of Whitehaven’s infrastructure failure should not be borne by food-producers or the taxpayer.
“This is yet another example of the community having to pay for the impacts of the coal industry,” Mr. Moylan said.
“Last year we saw an illegal discharge from a Whitehaven pit flood destroy a farmer’s crop and now they have sabotaged Christmas crops for the entire North-West.”
“How many more incidents like this will happen if Whitehaven is allowed to double its coal production?” Mr. Moylan said.
Front Line Action on Coal has urged Federal Environment Minister Tony Burke to reject the massive new Maules Creek mine, which would destroy thousands of hectares of productive farmland and critically endangered Box-Gum Woodland in Leard State Forest.
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