MORE THAN JUST A FIGHT
These podcasts show how a common enemy like coal seam gas fracking can bring divided communities together
The fight against fossil fuel corporations can often be grueling, but these stories show how the process of organizing, campaigning and blockading can shape divided individuals into a collective. Coal seam gas threatens the core of our existence – water – so it has the potential to form alliances where divides once stood. This collective energy lasts far beyond the campaign – once people stand up and fight its hard to sit back down. In this way, coal seam gas campaigns can be the catalyst for many other initiatives to address the climate crisis, building local resilience. .
The first podcast features Cam Walker from Friends of the Earth, which helped organize and support the “Gasfield Free” and “Lock the Gate” campaigns that spread around Australia in the face of frackings’ rise. It gives a behind-the-scenes look at how their grassroots approach enabled them to mobilize conservative rural towns until the state voted to pass a moratium on unconventional gas drilling last year. As Cam describes, their campaign brought many diverse threads together into a strong rope.
The second podcast features an episode I did with Community Power Agency called Voices of Community Energy. It features Ella Rose Goninan from Mullumbimby giving a personal account of how blockades can have a huge affect on a person’s identity, sense of purpose, and mental health in general.
But not all fights against CSG have been completely harmless. The third podcast about Gloucester shows an example of how debates over whether a town wants CSG can rip communities apart, especially small towns like Gloucester that need jobs.