Blues man: Kimberley a human rights issue

• John Butler says fighting for the Kimberley is more than just saving “the bloody whale”  Photo by Jeremy Dixon

• John Butler says fighting for the Kimberley is more than just saving “the bloody whale” Photo by Jeremy Dixon

JOHN BUTLER says you can “kiss the magical region of the Kimberley goodbye forever” if the Barnett government builds its $40 million gas hub at James Prices Point.

“It’s the most majestic, beautiful, untouched wilderness I’ve been to on the planet,” the musician and environmentalist told the Herald.

“It’s truly is a national treasure and there are very few places in the world like it.

“It’s not an anti-mining campaign—there are just some places you shouldn’t spoil.

“It truly is a rare and special thing.”

The John Butler Trio is planning a free gig—Concert for the Kimberley—at the Fremantle Esplanade on February 24 from 1.30pm.

Protest march

The protest march and show will also feature Missy Higgins and Ball Park Music.

Butler says WA premier Colin Barnett’s approach to all things is “pretty rough, blunt and a little arrogant”.

“If Colin Barnett gets in with this gas hub—which is really the world’s largest gas refinery—with a massive harbour and a huge jetty, its going to destroy 52sqkm of marine environment.

“If it gets it through it’s the thin end of the wedge.

“We all know what’s happened to the Pilbara. It’s been trashed.”

The local bluesman said the issue is deeper than just trying to save “the bloody whale”.

“I tell people how would they feel if their church, where their grandparents and their great-grandparents were buried, was to be blasted,” he says.

“I think it makes it very personal because it takes it out of the environmental and political realms and takes it into a human realm and a human rights issue,” he told the Herald.


“It’s an awareness concert. Just as important as a free concert, right in the middle of it, is a march right through Fremantle, which all of us can show some solidarity.

“Show how we feel about our state and our treasures.”

by Brendan Foster

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s