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How Dayne Pratzky's battle against CSG created The Frackman

SUITED UP: Anti-CSG campaigner Dayne Pratzky in a scene from the documentary The Frackman which is screening at cinemas across the Northern Rivers.
SUITED UP: Anti-CSG campaigner Dayne Pratzky in a scene from the documentary The Frackman which is screening at cinemas across the Northern Rivers. Contributed

DAYNE Pratzky is The Frackman and the movie documenting his adventures fighting the gas industry in Queensland is coming to the Northern Rivers.

Mr Pratzky is the embodiment of the Aussie larrikin. A party boy in Sydney, he moved to Chinchilla in western Queensland to hunt pigs and build a farm.

Hardly your average environmental activist.

But Mr Pratzky's life changed when Queensland Gas Company (QGC) started mining operations on his property.

The 90-minute film chronicles the ups and downs of Mr Pratzky's fight to have QCG removed from his land.

Mr Pratzky dismissed the idea that some footage included in the film could prompt gas companies to initiate legal action against him.

SCREENINGS

  • Byron Bay: Byron Theatre on Saturday, March 7, 7.30pm, as part of the Byron Bay Film Festival.
  • Lismore: Event Cinemas on Sunday, March 8, 5.30pm.
  • Murwillumbah: Regent Cinema on Monday, March 9, 7pm.
  • Ballina: Ballina Fair Cinemas on Tuesday, March 10, 7pm.
  • Byron Bay: Pig house Flicks on Wednesday, March 11, 7pm.

 

"I don't believe I've broken the law," he said.

"If the industry wasn't so secretive and dishonest we could have relied on the appropriate authorities to get the answers I was seeking.

"If they had done their job, I wouldn't have to do what I had to do."

The film is confronting at times with Mr Pratzky struggling to cope with the pressure.

"I was 40, my land was worth nothing, I was in trouble and it's not a good feeling," he said.

"I had a mental breakdown. I am not ashamed to admit it. That's the pressure that's put on people when that industry comes to town."

Asked how he endured, Mr Pratzky said the support of people from places like the Northern Rivers kept him going.

"I'll tell you why I lasted that long, it's because of people from the Northern Rivers and around Australia who came to my house and showed they cared," he said.

"We had busloads of people coming from the Northern Rivers, from the Nimbin Environment Centre, from Lismore and Kyogle.

"That made us feel that we weren't alone."

While Mr Pratzky is the key protagonist in the documentary, a number of Northern Rivers residents also appear on screen.

Topics:  csg qgc whatson



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