XR SA Rebels challenge government ‘right to cause harm’
By Extinction Rebellion Australia, on 17 December 2021
No penalties for civil disobedience actions drawing attention to Sussan Ley’s High Court appeal and NAB fossil fuel support
Annie, Cate, Margaret, Paul, Cathy, Dharma, Sarah and Trish faced court on December 18 after taking actions to highlight Sussan Ley’s High Court appeal against the Duty of Care ruling.
In October 2021 Ley was appealing a ruling that the Federal Government has a duty of care to protect Australian youth from climate harm. In effect, the government was fighting for the right to cause harm. XR SA Rebels action was held at the King William/Grote Street intersection, in full view of South Australia’s District, Supreme and Magistrates courts.
Rebels placed their hands through pipes that were threaded through prams in an action that disrupted morning peak hour traffic for several hours. Ten rebels were arrested on charges of obstructing the path of traffic. The eight rebels who faced court today received no convictions and no penalties on the basis of time served in custody.
Rebels gathered at Adelaide Magistrates Court the following week and staged a die-in as two other rebels attended court after a protest. Mary and Ian were charged with trespass when they jammed the doors of a private meeting at the Gouger Street NAB branch and refused to leave. The branch was shut down and the pair were charged with trespass.
Neither received penalties. Ian has been convicted but no conviction was recorded for Mary. Mary and Ian were demanding to see NAB's new oil and gas funding policy to ensure it was in alignment with the recent report from the International Energy Agency. That report was clear; there is no room new or expanded coal, oil and gas projects.
Despite claiming to take the report into account, NAB are continuing to support fossil fuel projects and the companies that enable them. It's coal for Christmas for NAB and CEO Ross McEwan.
This News Article was updated on Dec 22 to record the results of Mary and Ian’s Court appearance.