Updated: October 04, 2012
150 join John Butler as he takes Kimberley gas plant blockade to BHP’s Melbourne HQ
· John Butler Trio to join Bob Brown, Clare Bowditch and Missy Higgins in Federation Square Kimberley concert this evening
About 150 protestors joined iconic Australian musician John Butler as he performed outside BHP Billiton’s Melbourne headquarters in Lonsdale Street this morning to voice his opposition to the company’s involvement in the proposed James Price Point gas industrial complex in Western Australia’s Kimberley region.
Butler sang ‘Kimberley’ and ‘Revolution’, while Kimberley Traditional Owner Albert Wiggan also performed to the crowd carrying placards and banners.
Later today thousands are expected to flood Melbourne’s Federation Square from 6pm as the John Butler Trio join former Australian Greens leader Bob Brown and musicians Clare Bowditch and Missy Higgins at a concert to support protection of the iconic Kimberley.
The Kimberley has Australia’s most pristine coastline, home to the world’s largest humpback whale nursery and threatened dolphins, sea turtles and dugongs.
But it is now threatened as oil and gas giants Woodside, Shell, BHP Billiton, BP, Mitsubishi and Mitsui plan to build Australia’s biggest industrial development on the stunning red cliffs of the Kimberley’s James Prices Point, a significant indigenous heritage site and home to the longest chain of dinosaur footprints on the planet.
“We are gathering outside BHP Billiton to urge the company to pull out of the James Price Point gas project and explore more, practical, profitable and sustainable options in the Pilbara, where existing facilities already are,” Mr Butler said.
“They can exploit the Browse gas basin without desecrating one of the most culturally and environmentally rich parts of our country.
“The Kimberley is one of my most favourite places on this planet. It’s so pristine and dynamic; a rich and diverse countryside offering brilliant coastal blues alongside vivid red cliffs. It’s culturally and environmentally abundant; a rare and beautifully wild place. To think of industrialising this truly special region in order to exploit a resource when it is more profitable and practical to process it somewhere else seems absolutely ludicrous. On all grounds, economically, environmentally, socially and politically, the proposed gas refinery at James Price Point is not sustainable.”
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