The wave of disruptive civil disobedience protesting the climate emergency is set to escalate, with activists gathering support for a “mass blockade” of the International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) in Melbourne in late October.
IMARC is a giant conference of over 6,000 mining company executives and others. The Blockade IMARC Alliance has vowed to blockade the conference, scheduled for the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre from October 28 to 31.
Melbourne’s inner-city Moreland City Council approved a motion endorsing the blockade of IMARC at their meeting last night. The University of Melbourne Student Union also recently endorsed the blockade, and this week erecting giant signs on the Student Union building to advertise upcoming climate actions, advising students to “strike, occupy, shut it down”.
Moreland and UMSU join the Yarra City Council, the Victorian Greens, and many other groups in throwing their support behind the blockade.
Sue Bolton, Socialist Alliance councillor for Moreland, said: “Major fossil fuel companies like BHP and Yancoal will be joined at IMARC by companies like Rio Tinto, who have profited from decades of exploitation at mines in West Papua, Bougainville and elsewhere. I’m sure many residents of Moreland will join this important protest against the crimes of these corporations.”
“Strike, Occupy, Shut It Down,” said Anneke Demanuele, the University of Melbourne Student Union councillor who moved the motion endorsing the IMARC blockade. “Young people in Melbourne will be marching out of class next week for the global climate strike. We’ll be occupying city space in early October as part of the Extinction Rebellion ‘week of rebellion’. And we’ll be shutting down the climate criminals at IMARC in late October. The earth is burning. It’s time for mass action.”
“Support is coming in from across the community for this protest” said Maria Soupos for the Blockade IMARC Alliance. “Companies that profit from global warming, dispossession and genocide of Indigenous people and mass extinction of animal species, will be at IMARC. And so will thousands of ordinary people, raising our voices against this destruction for profit.”
“We’re planning mass civil disobedience on a scale that hasn’t been seen in Melbourne in decades” said Emma Black, also a spokesperson for the Blockade IMARC Alliance. “At the S11 protests in 2011, thousands turned out to shut down corporate criminals. We’re hoping for the same response for this urgent protest.”
Sue Bolton, Moreland City Councillor
Anneke Demanuele, University of Melbourne Student Union
Maria Soupos, Blockade IMARC Alliance
Emma Black, Blockade IMARC Alliancecase”feedbp:��|�m