Coal still a no-no

IssueJuly - August 2009
Feature by Jonathan Stevenson

Ed Miliband’s announcement that new coal power stations will only be permitted if 25% of their emissions are carbon-captured and stored hasn’t put a stop to the blossoming UK anti-coal movement – and rightly so, given the massive loopholes in the announcement.

Following the success of the Coal Caravan, which toured the north of England in April and May, five climate activists blockaded a coal conference at Chatham House on 1 June; the Surrey office of construction firm BAM Nuttall, which is bidding for the Kingsnorth contract, were invaded by climate activists on 5 June; and ten Greenpeace activists boarded a coal ship on its way to Kingsnorth power station on 22 June and prevented its cargo from being unloaded.

Thousands are expected to descend on Kingsnorth on 4 July for the “Mili-band” – a human chain around the power station to say no to dirty coal, preceded by a village fete.

Meanwhile, the trial of 29 people who blocked a coal train on its way to Drax power station in Yorkshire last summer begins at Leeds Crown Court on 29 June.