Climate campaigners shut down power station

On top of the chimney. Pic by @nodashforgas

Around 20 climate change campaigners shut down the UK’s newest gas-fired power station early this morning.

The protest started at 2am when they got through a security fence and climbed two smokestacks at EDF’s West Burton plant in Nottinghamshire. Some of them abseiled down inside the chimneys and set up camp inside the flues, stopping the plant’s furnaces from operating. 

The  power station in Nottinghamshire was targeted because it’s one of the first in a new generation of highly polluting gas plants planned for the UK. The Coalition Government recently announced it intends to give the green light to as many as 20 new gas plants – a move that would crash Britain’s carbon targets, contribute to the climate crisis and push up bills.

Protestor Ewa Jasiewicz, who is occupying one of the chimneys, said: “It’s pretty scary hanging inside a chimney, but we’ve been rigorously trained and have very skilled climbers. We’ve made a cosy camp with tarpaulins, and we plan to share a hot meal this evening at the same time as our friends on the other chimney. 

“We’re doing this because the gas plant is one of the first in a dash for gas that has to be stopped. The Government and the big energy companies want  to build as many as 20 new gas power stations, which would leave the UK dependent on this highly polluting and increasingly expensive fuel for decades to come.”

EDF said that the company was committed to low-carbon energy, adding: “The station is in a commissioning phase at the moment and the first unit is expected to be fully operational by the end of the year.” – Why I’m occupying a gas-fired power station chimney.

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