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Leards forest being fought for by protestors

More than 100 protesters have blocked access for work crews in the Leard State Forest as the campaign to block construction of the Maules Creek open-cut coal mine expands.

The Whitehaven coal project, one of three open pit coal mines proposed for Leard State Forest, would clear thousands of hectares of native habitat, including 500 hectares of critically endangered White Box-Gum woodland. It has recently been revealed that Whitehaven’s plan to safeguard this type of critical habitat, as required under law, is based on false and misleading information.

The campaigners want federal Environment Minister Greg Hunt to revoke approval to clear the forest for coal mining.

Read more: Anti-mining blockade steps up a notch at Maules Creek at http://www.smh.com.au/environment/water-issues/antimining-blockade-steps-up-a-notch-at-maules-creek-20140128-31jsg.html

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The project will clearfell a large area of Leard State Forest, including nationally critically endangered woodland and the habitat for 28 different endangered species, and is opposed by members of the local farming community. Now the blockade has brought farmers, Traditional Owners and environmentalists together.

"They have effectively handed over this important public forest, Leard State Forest, to the coal miners, and now they are trying to lock the public out so that the destruction of this priceless environmental area can go on unobserved" said Phil Spark, spokesperson with the Northern Inland Council for the Environment.

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Thank God for these brave protesters. Without people who can see that our democracy is seriously deficient and our wildlife have no protection and are disappearing there would be no hope. I urge anyone who can do so to go and assist their fellow Australians in this urgent, patriotic and necessary work. Open cut mining is insane when we are continually increasing demand through overproduction and overpopulation. Greg Hunt and his government are creating rather than solving problems. Their policies are nutty, done without consideration of thermodynamics, and are creating an impoverished natural world whilst depriving the rest of us of our rights. The Labor opposition is very similar and citizens are therefore left with no choice but physical resistance.

Tonight on Australian Story there was a story of a bloke who in his middle age took up bird photography in Mandurah WA. Inevitably when anything is about nature came the sad part. The place is being ruined through development A woman — someone Starr from the local conservation group –probably an important one– put forward the extremely outrageous suggestion that they should find new ways of developing …..or perhaps…….. not developing at all (this bit was in a small voice)

Photos were superb – all sort of migratory water birds..