Margo interviews @macavitykat, monopole sitter at #leardblockade


By Margo Kingston @margokingston1

31st January 2014

I met Kat Moore briefly the evening before she was arrested on Tuesday at #Leardblockade up a monopole on the Whitehaven construction site after stopping 13 Trucks from working all day.


I interviewed her yesterday by phone shortly after her return to Melbourne.

How does it feel to be home after that experience?

It feels good. I feel more entitled to be actively speaking about this. I’ve taken that stand, so I’m not just sitting on the sideline preaching. I’m actually doing something about it.

How did you come to be at #leardblockade?

I found out about the Australian Youth Climate Coalition and went along to Powershift 2013 and then to the East West Link protests where I met Nicola (a non violent direct action trainer at Counteract) and did some training with her … I came up to #leardblockade in December, but logistically I could play a big role because I had to leave early. This time when I came up I’d already made the decision that I was going to  put myself forward as arrestable.

How long were you up the monopole?

Six hours.

How did you find that experience?

The first three hours was a bit iffy because I was getting my head around logistics, like how to tie my water bottle on so I didn’t have to hold it and didn’t drop it. I ended up loosening the legstraps with my harness because they were digging in. Sitting with all that pressure for a long time starts to cut off your circulation a bit. Once I figured out the logistics I really enjoyed it up there.

The last three hours I was singing – bits of Beatle, Bob Dylan, Joni Mitchell – whatever came into my head. My support team can vouch for that! A bit  of jazz as well – songs that felt right to be singing up there, not necessarily protest songs.

They saw me as soon as I got up there. They had an eye on me the whole day. Early on there were more there – enjoying the novelty, taking some photos, having a chat, trying to figure out how I got up there – they were pretty impressed with the rig-up. Then they just checked me once in a while.

It was the first time I’d been arrested. I’d done quite a bit of training with Nicola, and I was pleased to find that I was as prepared as I’d hoped to be. I wasn’t surprised by anything that happened. It was like they were following the script that Nicola had given to me. They were playing the game and I’d already been taught the rules.

What’s the Twitter experience been like since you got home?

I got back this morning, and I had to get out of the house and do something else after a while because I was just sitting in front of the computer and reading all the articles, looking at Facebook and Twitter, finding all the photos. I got to the point where I thought, “I’ve got to go and do something else to take myself out of that heads space – I’m back, let’s get a dose of reality”. So I went into the AYCC office and did some work there.

Getting arrested was a big step to take –

Yeah, in the end it felt like the only next logical step for me to take. I’ve had conversations about it and I prepared for being arrested, and I’ve approached the problem it from different angles. I got to the point where I thought that was the next thing I needed to do in my path of opposition to the coal industry. Now I’ve done that I can chill out a little bit. Rather than constantly feeling like I’m on the verge of crossing that line, I’ve crossed it and now I can relax again, not feeling like it’s something I’m about to do.

It’s a bit of affirmation of my ability to maintain my calm and deal with whatever happens.


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  1. Just awesome, Kat. Thankyou.

    After an in-between generation who seem preoccupied with being uberconsumers, it gives we old codgers who fought for the forests in the ’70s and ’80s and beyond, some faith that your generation are prepared to sacrifice creature comforts for the sake of the planet and those who will be your generation’s children. Whether or not we succeed in saving Leard and the Pilliga, there are many struggles ahead against the well-established corporate fascism now almost totally in control of governments Australia (and world) wide. People like you make the impossible seem possible again.

    And now it’s come time to chase Metgasco’s wannabe CSG gasfields out of the Northern Rivers for good, we’re going to be relying on the commitment and courage of people like you. Thankyou.