The Pilliga Forest of New South Wales is
under attack by CSG (coal seam gas) mining being done by the Santos corporation. Drill
sites are being cleared, holes for huge dams of contaminated water are being
dug, pipelines are being cleared.
We need your help now! 100% of the donation you make on this website will go towards essential on-ground gear needed to protect the Pilliga Forest and stop the spread of coal seam gas across the NSW North West.
The Pilliga Forest is the only one of its kind in
New South Wales, providing the state with an inland haven for some of
Australia’s most highly valued and threatened and endangered native species. It
is also the southern recharge zone for the vast underground water reservoir
known as the Great Artesian Basin on which much of inland Australia relies for
Santos wants to turn the area into an
industrialised gasfield clearing thousands of hectares of forest, drilling
more than 850 coal seam gas wells through the Great Artesian Basin to get at
the gas and in the process creating billions of litres of contaminated water
for which they still have no plan how to deal with! Opposition to this madness is growing.
A group of dedicated and passionate people
are standing their ground, and maintaining a presence. Traditional Owners,
farmers, scientists, local community members, rural fire service volunteers,
school teachers, grandparents and
conservationists and other friends of the Pilliga, all recognise the common
threat and are working together to protect our land, our water and our future.
They are taking action, sometimes risking arrest and they need your support. But there is so much to do, the area large
and the challenge daunting. We need $8,000 to fund the Pilliga Protectors initiative
and to keep a permanent camp on site, in the heart of the Pilliga, as well as
to aid the continued efforts of local Traditional Owners and farmers in the
affected and surrounding areas.
This is an opportunity for you to give a gift
and become a Pilliga Protector. Together we must stop the Pilliga forests being
converted to an industrialised gasfield and becoming the foot-hold the industry
needs as a stepping stone to spread out across the valuable farming land of the
Liverpool Plains and right across the North-West of NSW.
Please make a donation today. It's tax-deductible and you'll be helping me to save the Pillga Forest for the people and the wilidlfe!
The Pilliga Mouse.
The Pilliga Mouse is found only in the Pilliga forest of North West NSW and is a federally listed threatened species. This unique mouse has become an icon for forest protection and the fighting of coal seam gas across NSW. Its only home is now destined to become an industrial gasfield and the species risks extinction. The Pilliga mouse is a totem for local Gomeroi people and is the mascot for the Namoi River Older People for the NSW Elders Olympics. Due to the threat, this Mighty Mouse is getting active to drum up the support necessary to stop the gas field threat. The Pilliga Mouse travels to actions, public forums, North West Alliance meetings and Aboriginal community events to spread the word.
How the funds will be used:
The funds will be used to keep the Pilliga Protection Camp operational and to reach out to neighboring and virtual communities and supporters via printed materials and the internet.
A place of
outstanding conservation significance, the Pilliga Forest of North West NSW is
the largest remaining temperate woodland in eastern Australia, and contains
significant Aboriginal and European cultural values.
The forest itself
stretches over half a million hectares and is one of only 15 national hotspots
for biodiversity. It is the home of threatened and endangered species, such as
the Pilliga Mouse, which is found nowhere else in Australia. The area also
supplies water to some of the most fertile land in the country, the Liverpool
Plains, and has some of the oldest and most spectacular Indigenous sites of
significance in Australia, such as the spectacular Sandstone Caves.
The Pilliga gas field is just the beginning
for Santos - a Trojan horse - as they attempt to roll gasfields across
north-west New South Wales, including some of the best food producing lands in
Santos has begun drilling and now threatens
the Great Artesian Basin. They have already sent coal seam gas discharge into the
Murray-Darling Basin. Spills of chemical ridden water have occurred in the
Pilliga, which lead to Santos recently facing charges for environmental
devastation. But still they are allowed to go on. The threat is too great to
ignore, and the potential for irredeemable and irreversible damage is too high.
“It is busy with trees, with animals and with men. It is lonely and beautiful. It is a million wild acres. And there is no other forest like it.”
Eric Rolls, ‘A Million Wild Acres’. Megan Kuhn's story
Protecting the Pilliga is essential to our
future. I don’t make that statement lightly but it is based on experiences I
have lived throughout my life. I am a fifth generation farmer so connection to
the land and appreciation of life’s balance is within me. Early in my career, I
worked in Narrabri with Water Resource engineers and later became a survey
technician in Gunnedah. Both roles added to my understanding that man can have
both positive and negative impacts on our surroundings. Surveying exposed me to
both open cut and underground mining. It was then I saw firsthand how the
modern day, large scale operations create serious man made imbalances that are
irreversible. The detrimental impacts are beyond what we see. As a mother, knowing
my family and our future are seriously at risk from Government approved
projects makes me more determined to stand up now and fight for us, our
communities and our future. Through working with communities right across the
North West, I have helped organise a neighbour to neighbour survey to ask
people how they feel about this particular issue. They feel the same! 96% of
community members across 1.5 million ha, so far, want to protect their future
from invasive gasfields. Now, the on ground battle is underway. I see and feel
more clearly the connection the traditional owners have with Country, and I
appreciate the significance of their pain caused by this destruction. The Ten
Mile Dam Camp has allowed me to listen and learn from a broad cross section of
community and I can only hope this opportunity will make
us stronger - together.
About the Rainforest Information Centre:
in 1980 the Rainforest Information Centre is a not-for-profit organisation
dedicated to the protection of the Earth's remaining rainforests in partnership
with the indigenous people and local communities who depend on them. RIC have been at the forefront of direct action for the environment since 1980. The Pilliga Forest is not a rainforest however we are so passionate about this issue we've decided to stepped in to help the campaign.
Some other great projects and outcomes: The
Rainforest Information Centre was born out of the successful struggle to save the sub-tropical rainforests of New South Wales, Australia
(now a World Heritage Area) in 1979-to 1981. His initial experiences to save
rainforests, beginning at Terania Creek, inspired John Seed to establish and
lead the organisation in its participation in the struggles to save the
temperate rainforests of Tasmania in 1982 (Franklin River Blockade) and the tropical rainforests of Far North Queensland in 1985-86 (Daintree Blockade).
Since then the Rainforest
Information Centre has been involved in hundreds of campaigns and practical
conservation projects to protect rainforests and other ecosystems in Australia & internationally while at the same time recognising the legitimate aspirations of
rainforest peoples. In recent years the Rainforest Information Centre has
worked in Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Columbia, Ecuador, Guatemala, Mexico,
Peru, USA, Congo, Cameroon, Malawi, Uganda, Cambodia, India, Indonesia,
Philippines, PNG, Vietnam and over the past 34 years in many other countries.
Other groups working on the project include Lock the Gate, The Wilderness Society, North West Alliance, Gomeroi Traditional Owners.