Skip to content or view screen version

50 Greenpeace activists inside a Kent power station.

BBC Browser. | 08.10.2007 17:42

According to this report I just found, there's some fun happening in Kent today. Apparently 50 people got inside Kingsnorth power station and are using a variety of tactics in an attempt to keep it offline long enough to take it off the national grid.
Here's the report from BBC, and also see the Greenpeace website

(Copied and pasted from BBC site)

Protesters raid coal power plant

Greenpeace campaigners have staged a protest at a power plant in Kent which could be the site of Britain's first new coal-fired station for 20 years.

The activists want Prime Minister Gordon Brown to reject plans for the Kingsnorth site, Hoo. They also aim to take it off the National Grid.

E.ON UK said protesters had been at the gates with some inside the facility, but insisted it was still operational.

One woman has been arrested on suspicion of aggravated trespass.

Kent Police said she gave herself up to officers on Monday afternoon.

The force said it sent negotiators to the scene after being called at about 0600 BST on Monday, and marine and climbing units were also on standby.

Reduced emissions

A statement said: "It is thought that 23 Greenpeace protesters are currently on power station property and several of them have chained themselves to generators.

"Police have closed surrounding roads and have already moved on 30 people from the outskirts of the site."

E.ON UK announced in October 2006 that it planned to build two new coal units at Kingsnorth, saying they would be cleaner and more efficient than the current ones with "state-of-the-art technology" reducing carbon dioxide emissions.

Greenpeace said about 50 activists were at the plant.

It said more than 13,000 objections had been sent to Medway Council, but "in the next couple of weeks the decision will go to Gordon Brown".

The climate campaigners said their message to the prime minister was: "Don't bottle it on climate change."

They scaled fences at the site just after 0500 BST on Monday.

One protester, 22-year-old Joss Garman, from north London, said he and others had climbed up coal conveyors, pressed the emergency stop buttons and chained themselves to the belts.

Mr Garman described the action as a form of "peaceful civil disobedience" which could last for days rather than hours.

"There is another team who are scaling the 250m-high (820ft) smoke stack, and they've got enough supplies to last for a few days," he said.

Mr Garman claimed the new coal units planned for Kingsnorth would do little to reduce carbon emissions.

"This power station [currently] wastes over two-thirds of the energy that it produces... although it will be slightly more efficient, this new plant will still lose over half the energy it will create."

He added that protesters hoped to have taken the power station off the National Grid later on Monday, but claimed there would be no blackouts as a result.

E.ON UK spokesman Jonathan Smith said: "They're in a number of places inside the power station, but they aren't actually causing it to stop running just yet.

"These people are not qualified to be in our power station... we're working very closely with the police to try to ensure a safe and swift end to this protest."

Mr Smith also said the proposals were for a "cleaner coal development".

"The new units will be carbon capture-ready, which means they would have the pipework on them to actually capture the carbon dioxide and to store it underground once that technology is proven."

The company estimates the two new units will reduce carbon emissions by about two million tonnes a year.

BBC Browser.