Farmers, environmentalists and Indigenous representatives will come under one banner on Saturday to tell NSW politicians that it’s #Time2Choose.
Breeza farmers John Hamparsum, Sarah Sulman and Peter Wills will be among the thousands expected to gather in Sydney’s CBD, led by beef farmer Glenn Morris who made headlines when he rode his horse across the Sydney Harbour Bridge in 2016.
The rally is a year out from the NSW state election, with participants to demand action to protect land, water and cultural heritage from coal mining and coal seam gas extraction.
Sarah Sulman is a member of Liverpool Plains Youth and said the rally will be “power to the people”.
“This government needs to start waking up and listening to the people,” she said.
“We need to start the conversation again.
“There are so many communities fighting the same thing, why don’t we fight together?”
John Hamparsum echoed Ms Sulman’s sentiments of unity.
“I think it’s a good concept to unite everyone under that one common banner,” he said.
“We need to help try and make people aware of the amount of coal mines in NSW in the process of approving… It’s something I think people need to know about.”
The farmer said NSW politicians need to start “stating their position on what they support and what they don’t support”.
“Our political leaders need to start to think about our future generations. Our children and grandchildren will suffer because of the inaction,” he said.
“I think it’s time that Australia takes a bit of responsibility for our contribution to climate change.”
Breeza resident Peter Wills has been part of the North West Alliance committee for four years and said it was important for rural people to stand up and be counted.
“I think it’s important to get to Sydney to show our hand to the government that we won’t be steam-rolled into these developments and there are people across the north west who are fighting these development, which will affect our water and our way of life and our environment,” he said.
“We need to put pressure on our government and a year out from the state elections, this is our chance to make sure they listen to us.”
Mr Wills has been regularly travelling to Sydney to set-up alongside the Knitting Nannas Against Gas and Greed and talk to city-dwellers about NSW projects.
“It’s really a topical conversation at the moment,” he said.
“The tide is changing and we’re getting this shift politically.
“These developments, if there’s a change of government, could be out the window next week.”
Retired Quirindi farmer Hugh Price is a member of the Caroona Coal Action Group and said the current NSW government under NSW premier Gladys Berejiklian was “city-centric”.
“I’m fed up with the way the NSW Government ignores what I consider to be looking after the long-term interests of this state, by which I mean people who produce food, and the groundwater,” he said.
“All we’re doing is jeopardising our natural resources of our unique soils of the Liverpool Plains and the waters beneath.
“I want to bring to the attention of current politicians and aspiring politicians the importance that I and thousands of other people place on these resources we have of land, soil, water and clean air.”