BOTH the emotions and the stakes were high during the inaugural Forum on Australia’s Food Security held in Oakey and hosted by radio broadcaster Alan Jones last night.
The forum, the first in a series of rallies to be held across mining-affected areas across Australia, attracted hundreds of politicians, environmentalists, academics, farmer and concerned residents from the Darling Downs and across Queensland.
Mr Jones was particularly passionate about the fate of local agricultural land considering he was born in Oakey and went to school at the now mine-ravaged town of Acland.
“The farmer is usually left with no defences— I’m sorry but the defence is here and the battle begins tonight,” Mr Jones said.
“I’m not opposed to mining or coal seam gas mining but I am opposed to the arrogance of these mining companies who feel they can go anywhere and do anything they want and get away with it.
“This (land) is our heritage, it’s our lifeblood.
“Just drive from Dalby to Goombungee; you’ll see miles of land without animals and homes uninhabited because of coal mining.”
Federal MP Bob Katter said the way the government was handling the situation was shameful.
“The rights of property will be returned; all we have to do is stand on our hind legs and fight and that’s what we’re doing tonight,” he said.
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