PUBLIC PRESSURE: Activists still say they’ll stop Adani
IT IS Central Queensland's most controversial mining project that has been about a decade in the making.
But after jumping through many hoops and getting every government tick of approval, activists still believe public pressure could stop Adani's Carmichael Mine project in its tracks.
More than 60 businesses have ruled out working with the Indian mining giant, ended contracts or publicly distanced themselves from the mine.
Public pressure against international engineering company GHD was so great more than 80,000 calls and emails were sent demanding the company cut ties with Adani.
Mullumbimby based Murray 'Muzz' Drechsler has toured the country protesting coal and gas developments, some of which he says were successfully stopped.
He recently visited the Frontline Action on Coal protest base Camp Binbee, 45 minutes inland from Bowen.
Mr Drechsler said be believed public pressure and peaceful protest would stop the Adani project.
"It has a long demonstrated history," he said.
"Peaceful protest is basically the only way change has been brought about through history.
"It is how Gandhi got the English out of India and how Martin Luther King got civil rights - this people power is always stronger than corporate power."
Queensland Resources Council chief executive Ian Macfarlane sees things differently.
He said public pressure would not stop the project and described protesters' tactics as "bullying" companies to force their hand away from lucrative and job-creating contracts.
"There is a very targeted campaign against Adani and anyone who takes contracts with them becomes a target of all sorts of abuse and disruption and illegal behaviour," he said.
Mr Macfarlane said the risk of applying pressure to contractors considering work with Adani was that the jobs would eventually be outsourced overseas.
"The project will inevitably go ahead," he said.
"These jobs will simply be performed by companies overseas and the jobs will be lost to Queenslanders.
"If companies decide for any reason not to take a contract, then that is jobs that are lost to Queenslanders."
Adani itself is clear; it will not be intimidated.
A spokeswoman for the company said more than $500 million worth of contracts had been awarded for work on the project.
"Our Carmichael Project is now being constructed and we have numbers of contractors working with us and many more have expressed interest in securing work," she said.
"Just last week we announced we had signed a $15 million contract for civil works with Townsville company Mendi.
"After more than eight years of working on our project we have repeatedly demonstrated that we will not be intimidated or deterred."