Thousands of people gathered in the middle of the Coal City Courant on Sunday night to protest against the coal train project in Riverside Coal City.
The group chanted slogans such as “I’m sick of coal”, “Don’t build this train”, and “No more coal”.
“We’re not going to pay the bills with our lives, we’re going to fight for justice for our lives,” protester, Michelle Pfeiffer, said.
Protesters said they were against the train project because of climate change and because it would put millions of people out of work.
The coal train, which is a joint venture between Transurban and the Queensland Government, is a $20m project to link Brisbane’s north and south suburbs with the Gold Coast.
The project is the biggest project to benefit from a coal mine in Australia.
“The coal train is going to destroy our communities, destroy our climate, destroy the lives of our families,” protester James Broussard, of South Brisbane, told the ABC.
“We’ve been here since the 1980s and we’re not happy with the state of Queensland.”
Mr BrouSSard said he and his family have lived on the Gold Road for 40 years and are very worried about the impact the train is expected to have on the region.
“This is our home, it’s where we’ve been living for 40-years,” he said.
“They want to put us out of our homes.”
The group said the project was “not sustainable”, and was needed because it was “essential” for the town’s economy.
“As a community, we’ve got to stand up and say ‘no’ to this project,” protester Michelle Doolin said.
The Gold Coast town of Riverton is facing a huge financial blow with the Queensland Rural Development Authority (RDA) funding the $20.5 million project.
Mr Boudreau said the town of nearly 40,000 people was “absolutely devastated” by the project.
“What we’ve seen is we’ve lost a lot of our businesses,” he told ABC Radio Brisbane.
“And we’re also losing jobs because of this project.”
We’re already facing a $40 million shortfall in our pension fund,” Mr Boussard said.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has urged the Queensland Rail and Road Authority (QRRL) to “work with the community” to find a way to secure funding for the rail project. “
It’s a very sad day for our town,” she said.
Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has urged the Queensland Rail and Road Authority (QRRL) to “work with the community” to find a way to secure funding for the rail project.
She also promised to work with the RDA to find ways to keep the rail line open.
“Queensland has the strongest rail infrastructure in the world,” Ms Palaszzczuk said.