Climate activist Raymond Weatherall is perfectly clear about what needs to happen to new gas and oil projects.
“They don’t deserve to be in our country,” he said.
“And if we defeat (mining company) Santos, it will inspire other aborigines to say ‘no, stop coming on our land and killing it.’
Unions, faith groups, climate activists and high school students rallied outside the New South Wales parliament building on Monday to demand the government halt new coal and gas projects.
Mr Weatherall is leading the fight against the Santos gas project at Narrabri and is one of 18 Homeroa people on the Indigenous title claimant’s representative body.
Last year, Santos launched proceedings at the National Aboriginal Title Tribunal to proceed with its 850-well coal seam gas project in north-west New Wales without the consent of the Homeroa people.
Traditional owners voted 162 to 2 with four abstentions to reject the deal.
The NSW and federal governments approved the Narrabri project in 2020.
14-year-old high school student Alice skipped classes to go to a rally in support of the people of Homeroa with her mother and friends.
“If the government is not going to protect our future, we will do it ourselves,” she told AAP.
“Sometimes adults don’t want to tell us what’s really going on because it’s their responsibility and that’s a hard idea to face, but it’s real and we need to do something about it.”
Protesters also called on the authorities to repeal anti-protest laws.
Builders union secretary Darren Greenfield said Sydney would not be the same without the protests.
“The Circular Quay, the Rocks – they would have been trampled years ago if it weren’t for our ancestors who protested,” he said at the rally.
“Think of the people who put you in this house and put you in government and get rid of these anti-protest laws.
“Give them back tonight.”