Anti dirty coal campaign takes to the streets

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The Bristol Greenpeace Group is one of many taking part in the Big If Coal Campaign and launched their activities on 17-18 October. “I’ve got to do something” said Fi Radford from Bristol, who became involved for the first time with this campaign. “People want to get involved but they don’t know how” she says as she stands in front of the Council House wearing a Greenpeace t-shirt and inviting people to use coal and sign messages such as ‘make it a little cleaner’, on a notepad.

Greenpeace campaigners are inviting members of the public to either: use coal fragments to sketch a relevant anti-coal picture; write a relevant anti-coal message or send a thumb or palm print and message to Ed Miliband MP, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change; or take the pledge and sign up to the ‘Big If’ campaign by sending a postcard to Ed Miliband which states “Unless you commit to stop all CO2 emissions from dirty coal power stations like Kingsnort from day one, I will ‘join a protest at your Department of Energy and Climate Change’, ‘vote for the parliamentary candidate who will stand against dirty coal power stations like Kingsnorth’ , ‘take peaceful direct action to stop dirty coal power stations like Kingsnorth being built’”, or you can insert your own idea.

Arriving at the meeting of EU Environment Ministers in Luxembourg on 21 October, Secretary of State for Climate Change, Miliband said Environment Ministers are determined that the EU maintains its leadership position on climate change in order to promote an ambitious deal at Copenhagen.  There is a recognition that many challenges lie ahead and that heads of government need to agree a clear financial position at the end of this month. We must maintain momentum towards the December deadline the world has set on climate change. The key messages from the campaign are being promoted until the Copenhagen Climate Change Conference (COP 15) on 15 December , and they consist of ruling out new coal-fired power stations in the UK because the building of them will undermine the chances of stopping climate change. Greenpeace claim that Miliband is proposing that the government allows new coal power stations to be built if there is 25% carbon capture, and that they will have to have 100% carbon capture by 2025.

Greenpeace claim that this means there will still be 75% of the emissions going into the atmosphere until 2025 and even then there is no guarantee that the technology will exist or will be affordable. They claim that to stop climate change, the government needs to invest massively in renewable energy for which the UK already has the technology and which already works. Building new coal on the basis of the hope that a technology will work in the future is nothing more than gambling with the future Greenpeace maintains.

By Joanna Papageorgiou in Bristol

1 November, 2009

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Under Creative Commons License: Attribution Non-Commercial


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