Property Rights Australia chair Jim Willmott speaking at the Canberra rally alongside Member for Wide Bay Llew O’Brien, Katy McCallum (holding yellow sign) and One Nation Senator Malcolm Roberts

February 6, 2024

Two South Burnett MPs plus two local residents were key speakers at a noisy anti-renewables rally held outside Parliament House in Canberra on Tuesday.

The “Reckless Renewables Rally” was organised to provide a platform for groups to express their concerns over the speed of the rollout of solar, wind and pumped hydro projects across Australia.

Speakers claimed major environmental damage was occurring, with species being driven to extinction.

They also objected to the use of the word “farm” in project descriptions, emphasising that “farms” grow food.

Although renewables were the major theme, there were also shouts of “Defund the ABC” and “Sack them all” (referring to politicians).

Katy McCallum, from the Kilkivan Action Group, spoke strongly against the Borumba Dam pumped hydro project, and Powerlink’s planned transmission lines.

Member for Wide Bay Llew O’Brien also expressed concerns, as did Member for Flynn Colin Boyce.

Nationals leader David Littleproud – the Member for Maranoa – was a surprise addition on stage as his speech had not been promoted ahead of the rally.

Earlier, United Australia Party Senator Ralph Babet urged people not to vote for either the ALP or Coalition parties as they were both “two wings of the same bird”, saying both supported net zero. He said the UAP would never support net zero as “carbon is not a poison”.

South Burnett-based Jim Willmott, chair of Property Rights Australia, said regional communities were being split by the “reckless” rollout of renewable projects.

He labelled some of the foreign companies involved as “carpetbaggers”.

Speaking later, Mr Willmott said the rally had “put the government on notice”.

“We need a Federal Senate Inquiry to give a voice to the communities most impacted by the rush to reckless renewables,” Mr Willmott said.

UPDATE: Nationals Leader and Member for Maranoa David Littleproud also joined the other two local Federal MPs on stage at the rally.

Member for Flynn Colin Boyce speaking at the rally … he expressed concerns about projects in Central Queensland
Member for Wide Bay Llew O’Brien spoke against the Borumba Dam project as well as expressing support for internal combustion engine motor vehicles (and motorbikes)

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