Yvonne Margarula

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Yvonne Margarula won the 1998 Friends of the Earth International Environment Award and the 1998 Nuclear-Free Future Award. She also won the 1999 U.S. Goldman Environmental Prize, with Jacqui Katona, in recognition of efforts to protect their country and culture against uranium mining.[1][2]


The Mirrar aboriginal people, led by Margarula and Katona, mounted a large campaign in opposition to the proposed Jabiluka uranium mine in the Northern Territory of Australia. They used legal action and education to gain national and international support. In March 1998 the Mirrar, together with environmental organizations, used massive on-site civil disobedience to create one of the largest blockades in Australia's history. Over several months, approximately 5,000 people from across Australia and around the world travelled to the remote camp to protest with the Mirrar people. In July the land was cleared by Energy Resources of Australia and construction of the entrance to the Jabiluka mine began; however, protesters intervened and about 550 were arrested, including Margarula and Katona.[3][4][5]

In 2011, Margarula wrote a public letter to Ban Ki Moon, Secretary General of the United Nations, expressing sorrow that uranium from Mirrar land was used in the Fukushima plant.[6]

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