When: Friday 11 July, supporters will gather outside the Supreme Court of NSW from 9am.
Where: Supreme Court of NSW, 184 Phillip St, Sydney.
Media Contact: Rick Laird, Maules Creek farmer, is available for comment. Call Nicola Paris on 0422 990 040 to arrange an interview and for further information.
Rick Laird is a farmer from Maules Creek. His family has been farming in the district for more than 150 years, but the future of their farms is now under threat from Whitehaven’s ANZ-funded Maules Creek coal mine. Rick will travel from Maules Creek with his brothers, also farmers from Maules Creek, to support Jonathan Moylan at court on Friday.
Jonathan Moylan will not be available for comment before sentencing. His availability to comment after sentencing is dependent upon the sentence handed down.
ANZ provides a $1.2 billion loan facility to Whitehaven Coal, primarily intended to develop the Maules Creek Coal Project. The Maules Creek Coal Project is a new open-cut coal mining project being developed in Leard State Forest and adjacent farm land near Maules Creek in north west NSW.
Leard State Forest is located between Narrabri and Boggabri, it includes the most extensive and intact stands of the nationally-listed and critically endangered Box-Gum Woodland remaining on the Australian continent. The forest is home to 396 species of plants and animals and includes habitat for 34 threatened species and several endangered ecological communities.
The Maules Creek Coal Project is approved to extract up to 13 million tonnes of coal annually and is estimated to produce 30 million tonnes of CO2 equivalent per year. The mine is expected to operate for more than 30 years. The coal will be railed from the mine in north west NSW to the port of Newcastle for export. The coal mine project boundary is approximately 5 kilometres from the Maules Creek township.
Maules Creek farmer Rick Laird speaking in support of Jonathan Moylan at a court hearing last year told media: “We’ve been fighting these mines for years, and people are finally starting to hear about it. You’re only given limited ways to challenge mine proposals, and they get approved anyway, even if it means the end of a community. If these mines go ahead, it’s the end of our livelihoods. We won’t be able to farm the land and we worry about the impact of coal dust on our health. The Maules Creek community stands with Jono.”
Source: Stand with Jono campaign press release via mail chimp.