Photos by Dougal Gorman
When something matters, you gotta make a bit of noise.
And that’s exactly what Seed Mob and GetUp did in Sydney’s CBD, making their voices heard on the street in peaceful protest as energy giants Empire Energy conducted their AGM upstairs. As CBD office workers streamed past on crisp Thursday morning, the groups of activists and Traditional Owners gathered with banners to campaign against the fracking—both planned and already underway—in the Northern Territory.
In attendance were a variety of ages, cultures and walks of life (including a few protest veterans who quite literally drummed up a welcome racket), all with the common purpose of telling the energy company to ‘frack off’ and extract themselves from Aboriginal land. One of the morning’s speakers was national director of Seed Mob, Amelia Telford, who was able to put into words exactly the hurt and injustice First Nations people have experienced from corporate interests taking precedence over their rights to country.
‘Although we come from many nations, we have come together to put an end to the ongoing threat of fracking on our countries which will desecrate and denigrate our lands,’ Amelia said to the crowd gathered. ‘We know our country—we read it, we understand it, we alone speak for it and its songlines. It is our birthright, handed down by bloodline. Together, we fight for it.’
The crowd responded with chants of ‘frack off’ and ‘always was, always will be, Aboriginal land’, sung loudly enough to tickle the ears of empire Energy upstairs. ‘These companies won’t even answer the most basic of questions: where they plan to drill or where they plan to build,’ Amelia said. She continued, ‘We don’t have the same resources as these corporations—the system is already set up against us.’
Campaigning against fracking in the NT has been Seed’s MO for years now, and was even the focus of their eye-opening 2018 documentary Water is Life (which you can watch online now here). Together, Seed Mob, Get Up and scores of organisations across the country are joining the fight against fracking, but they need your help. To find out more about the campaign to stop fracking in the NT, check out Seed’s site, sign the petition, or make a donation to help keep their important work rolling.