Culture

This Chill Activist Grandma Is On The Front Lines Of The Adani Blockade. What Did You Do Today?

“I’m a law abiding citizen, mother and grandmother. The impacts of Adani’s mine are terrifying."

Audrey Cooke is a 72-year-old retiree and grandmother. She spent today with a bike lock around her neck, chained to a gate in Central Queensland, with a bunch of other activists protesting the controversial proposed Adani coal mine. She was later arrested for her efforts.

What did you do today?

Seriously, check out these pictures of Cooke being an absolute legend. She’s wearing a phenomenal hat (look at that palm tree print!), and helping to oppose a mine that would trash Indigenous land, the Great Barrier Reef and also, y’know, the planet. Not only this, but she’s doing it all looking as calm and chill as if this is just an ordinary day for her, which as far as we know, maybe it is. I don’t know about you, but I’m overcome with respect for this woman right now.

“I’m a law abiding citizen, mother and grandmother,” is how Cooke described herself in a statement from Frontline Action on Coal. “The impacts of Adani’s mine are terrifying.”

“The world is moving beyond coal. It’s ludicrous that a country as sunny and windy as Australia is even considering this ridiculous mine. It would be a terrible investment in a miserable future.”

Cooke, of course, was not the only activist on the front lines today. The blockade, which began at 4.30 this morning, ultimately saw 17 people arrested for trespassing on the mine site, including NSW Greens MPs Jeremy Buckingham and Dawn Walker. Both said they had no regrets about their arrests, instead emphasising the importance of stopping the mine before it’s too late.

“Although this mine is miles from anywhere, the eyes of all Australians are on it,” Walker said in a statement. “I’m appalled by the way this project is tearing indigenous communities apart and offering a sub standard agreement to Traditional Owners for their land, with little economic opportunity.

“On every level this operation doesn’t stack up.”

Another protestor locked to the gates with Cooke said “I don’t think the position I’m in is dangerous at all, compared to the position the Adani mine will put the planet in.”

This morning’s blockade comes a day after the Chinese embassy announced the Adani mine will not be funded by Chinese banks, which may spell the end of the project. All of Australia’s big banks have previously refused to fund the mine.

The protestors aren’t taking any chances though — Frontline Action on Coal have made it clear that they have further civil disobedience action planned for coming weeks, and larger-scale protest planned for next year if the mine is still on the cards then.

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Feature image supplied by Frontline Action on Coal