The global media network Al Jazeera has today broadcast a twenty-five-minute story highlighting our campaign to defend takayna rainforest from Chinese state-owned miner MMG’s proposed toxic tailings dump.
The episode The Battle to Save Australia’s Ancient Forests has aired on the current affairs program 101 East and will repeat over the coming weeks as well as being available on Al Jazeera’s on-demand service.
“We are thrilled that the story of our battle for these World Heritage-value rainforests is being told. Tasmania’s takayna is an area of World Heritage significance and the world needs to know it’s not protected and with imminent destruction,” said Bob Brown Foundation takayna Campaigner Scott Jordan.
“Successive Australian Governments have failed to protect this ancient, carbon-dense and wildlife-rich landscape and now the Chinese Government, as owners of MMG, are attempting to take advantage of that failure. Their proposal to dump twenty-five million cubic metres of toxic, acid-producing heavy metals tailings into an ancient rainforest valley is a global atrocity. Both state and federal governments have obligations under the World Heritage Convention to seek the protection of areas of globally significant heritage value and they are equally guilty of shamefully ignoring that obligation in takayna.”
“Only one criterion needs to be met for World Heritage listing, yet takayna meets seven of the ten criteria and remains unlisted and imminently threatened. takayna is one of the most globally significant heritage sites with only two other sites on the planet meeting seven criteria – one in Australia and one in China.”
“Our Foundation’s relentless, non-violent protests have halted the destruction of takayna’s rainforests by MMG and we remain poised to return to the forests if Australia’s Environment Minister fails to protect takayna in her pending decision,” Scott Jordan said.
Al Jazeera has one of the largest global television audiences.
A telling point in the episode is when journalist Amos Roberts asks MMG’s Mine Manager Steve Scott “It sounds a bit like out of sight out of mind though doesn’t it? Let’s put it in the forest where we can’t see it?”, to which Mr Scott replies “Why put it in the town if you don’t have to?” (11.08)
“MMG’s dirty secret is now out there for the world to judge,” said Mr Jordan.