Media Release: Protestors block miners’ access to Tasmanian rainforest ....with a piano.

In a novel twist, protestors have blocked access to Chinese state-owned miner MMG’s proposed toxic, heavy metals tailings dam site with a piano. The modified piano has been fitted with a steel pipe allowing artist and activist Merridee Rohrlach (28) to insert her arm and lock into the instrument to prevent its removal.

The tailings dam, if constructed, would deforest 285 hectares of rainforest and melaleuca forest. Miner MMG proposes to pump across the Pieman River and dump 25million cubic metres of sulphide, acid producing mine tailings into an ancient pocket of Australia’s largest temperate rainforest. The site has documented populations of listed threatened species, including the Tasmanian Masked Owl, Tasmanian Devil and Spotted Tailed Quoll.

“Today’s protest is the latest in a seventeen month rolling disruption of MMG’s access to the rainforest site. Currently, roadworks on the site are being undertaken illegally in the absence of EPBC permits. A separate works permit for drilling and clearing is being reconsidered with a reconsideration decision due this Friday,” said Bob Brown Foundations takayna / Tarkine Campaigner Scott Jordan.

“takayna / Tarkine is a magically invaluable place. This ancient forest is ecologically and environmentally significant in its status as a home for threatened and endangered species, and its capacity for extensive carbon storage and oxygen generation. However, takayna also offers us a precious repository of natural wonder, of spirituality and creativity”, said Merridee Rohrlach.

Bob Brown Foundation has consciously incorporated art into its campaigns, including hosting its annual Art for takayna event at the site of today’s protest over the past two years.

“Music has bound protesters through the ages. Songs from the campaign to Save the Franklin continue to be shared today. We must celebrate the sounds of the forest and the sounds of people protecting them alike” said Bob Brown Foundation Campaigner Erik Hayward.

“Miner MMG can break the law but they cannot break our spirit. We will prevail and we will succeed and we will enjoy ourselves doing it. They cannot break our morale,” said Erik Hayward.


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  • Adam Burling
    published this page in Media Releases 2022-06-06 08:25:30 +1000