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.”
Guardian.co.uk – Why I’m occupying a gas-fired power station chimney.
Deborah Meaden, one of the judges on TV’s Dragon’s Den, has attacked the “failure” of Chancellor, George Osborne, to promote green energy and businesses, as she led hundreds in a protest outside the Treasury.
The protest, organised by Stop Climate Chaos on 18 October, saw campaigners from business, environment, trade union, faith and women’s groups, don free hard-hats to promote their message that “green is working”.
Leaders from campaign groups such as the RSPB and Greenpeace delivered a joint letter to the Prime Minister, David Cameron, calling on him to maintain support for the UK’s carbon targets and focus on stimulating green growth. Meaden said: “This is a genuine coalition. When you get such a diverse group calling for the same thing, surely it’s worth listening to. This is mainstream.”
Protesters call on George Osborne to recognise green economy’s potential | Environment | guardian.co.uk.
More than 50 businesses, including household names such as Asda, Sky and PepsiCo, have called on the Government to put in place a 2030 target on decarbonising the power sector.
They argue that such a move – already backed by Labour and the Lib Dems – will stimulate investment and revitalise the UK’s ageing energy infrastructure.
Firms call on Tories to back 2030 carbon target for power sector | Environment | The Guardian.