The fifth People’s Blockade of the World’s Biggest Coal Port is happening on March 28 at 10am at Horseshoe Beach in Newcastle (where it always is). This will be a fun colourful community-type day where hundreds of people will get in kayaks, rafts and other vessels to fill up Newcastle Harbour and block the world’s biggest coal port for the whole day. We’ve always held up the coal industry and nobody has ever been arrested. Want to know why? Here are some details:

Newcastle, already the world’s biggest coal port, is set to open a massive new coal terminal this year, bringing the export capacity of the Hunter Valley coal chain to an incredible 178 million tonnes of coal per annum. That’s the climate change equivalent of 30 Bayswater Power Stations. Within ten years, the coal corporations plan on exporting more than 300 million tonnes of coal per annum – a tripling of current export capacity. Tripling coal exports means tripling coal mining. As Newcastle coal exports boom, more precious bushland will be razed, more waterways polluted, more communities ripped apart as the transnational coal companies carve their way westwards into the Liverpool Plains. The profits will be exported, but the devastation will stay here in the Hunter. The catastrophic effects of climate change will hurt all around the world.

For more information, visit the Riding Tide website. Now the important bit: there will be a raft-building competition with a prize for the coolest raft! We hope that every enviro collective in NSW (and maybe even Vic/Queensland) will participate. You just have to meet our definition of “coolest”, which might be most pretty/fast/effective/extravagant – try to get into our heads and see what you need to score the prize. There’s already a SEAN raft under construction. Want to get involved? Email us and we’ll share our detailed schematics with you (or at least give you some ideas).

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Seriously, don’t you wish you were building rafts with us?

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