Anti-coal protesters arrested after 6-hour stand-off
>>RELATED: New Acland Coal Mine tied up in fresh appeal
UPDATE, 12.45PM: TWO climate change protesters are in custody and on the way to the Toowoomba watchhouse after police cut them from the railway line at Jondaryan.
Witnesses said police worked for about 40 minutes to free the protesters, who had locked their arms inside a metal barrel filled with concrete, which had been placed on the line.
The duo from the Frontline Action on Coal were protesting the Supreme Court's decision to send the expansion of New Acland Stage 3 back to the Land Court, after the court had previously recommended the Queensland Government reject the project.
EARLIER, 10am: AURIZON has condemned the "irresponsible actions" of protestors who illegally entered the rail corridor near the New Acland mine this morning.
"Everyone has a right to express their opinion but not when it comes at the expense of safety for the community and our employees," an Aurizon spokeswoman said.
"Fully loaded coal trains can take up to two kilometres to stop, even when the train crew apply the emergency brake.
"It is irresponsible for these people to jeopardise the safety of themselves and our train drivers, who can be left shocked and traumatised by near-miss incidents."
EARLIER: Climate change protesters have halted the movement of coal trains at Jondaryan, after locking themselves to a concrete barrel on the rail line.
Front Line Action on Coal Brisbane's Emma Dorge, and another man named John, who did not want his last name used, began the protest around 6.30 this morning by moving a large concrete barrel onto the train tracks and locking themselves to it.
Both protesters hail from Brisbane, and the protest was ongoing when The Chronicle spoke to Ms Dorge at 8.30am.
"There are currently three police officers and a handful of workers and security from the mining site here," she said.
"Personally I feel like we've exhausted other avenues of dissent and we need to stop mining coal now. We're out here because New Hope wants to expand Acland to stage three."
The purpose of the Front Line Action on Coal protest is to highlight the impact coal has on the climate and environment.
Organisers said this direct action was sparked by the Queensland Supreme Court overturning the Land Court judgment which had ordered the Queensland Government to reject the New Acland Coal Mine Expansion.
The protesters say they have put their livelihoods on the line to fight for a healthy future, in solidarity with the Oakey Alliance and Darling Downs residents who have been fighting this proposed expansion for years.
"The Land Court initially ruled that the proposed expansion of the mine would negatively impact groundwater to the extent that landholders would feel the effects for hundreds of years to come," Ms Dorge said.
"Due to a lack of regular reporting on air quality, it is unclear whether air quality restrictions have been adhered to. However we know that New Acland Coal has received over 100 complaints on dust-related matters.
John said that this was part of a wider campaign to draw the red line under coal by June 30 and demand no new coal be mined and instead support a clean energy future.
"Coal operations, both in Acland and globally, are polluting air, water, and soil. New Hope Group must put people before profits," he said.
Aurizon has been contacted for comment.