Three men who took part in what’s believed to be the longest single anti-fracking protest in the UK have been sent to prison. The packed public gallery at Preston Crown Court listened in silence as the judge sentenced Richard Roberts and Simon Blevins to 16 months and Rich Loizou to 15 months. Women began singing as they were led away. Outside the court, anti-fracking campaigners,some in tears, said they were devastated by the sentences. A fourth man who also took part in the protest was given a 12 month prison sentence suspended for 18 months. The four had climbed onto lorries delivering to Cuadrilla’s shale gas site in Lancashire in July 2017 and stayed there for a total of 99.5 hours.
Drill or Drop 26th Sept 2018 read more »
Business Green 26th Sept 2018 read more »
iNews 26th Sept 2018 read more »
Guardian 26th Sept 2018 read more »
Anti-fracking campaigners deserve our gratitude, not a prison term – Greenpeace UK. Commenting on the 15-month and 16-month jail sentences handed down to three anti-fracking protesters in Lancashire today, Greenpeace UK executive director John Sauven said: “Peaceful protest is the safety-valve of a healthy democracy. It allows ordinary people to protect their health, families and homes from harm when all other safeguards have failed. It’s a strange society that massively rewards those responsible for causing more climate change while putting those trying to stop it in jail. Ministers have changed laws, taken away homeowners’ rights and distorted the planning process to make way for the shale industry, yet it’s four peaceful protesters that get punished for climbing on a lorry. “As the world’s leading scientists are about to issue their latest warning on the existential threat fossil fuels pose to our living world, these Lancashire protesters deserve our gratitude, not a prison term. They have done what this government promised to do but is yet to deliver – making sure that we can leave our children and grandchildren a healthier environment than the one we found.”
Greenpeace 26th Sept 2018 read more »
Letter Dr Robin Russell-Jones, Your article on fracking claims that “natural gas is seen as a bridge between high polluting coal and cleaner energy sources led by renewables”. First, no bridge is needed. Coal-fired plants are being phased out anyway under the terms of the EU Large Combustion Plant Directive, so by the time shale gas comes on stream it will be displacing renewables, not replacing coal. Second, it is disingenuous to argue that shale gas is cleaner than coal in terms of climate change. Certainly it produces less carbon dioxide per unit of energy when burnt, but this benefit is cancelled out by upstream releases of methane during the exploration, extraction, storage and distribution stages. The rise in atmospheric methane that has occurred over the past decade can be attributed to the significant increase in gas production worldwide and the cavalier approach to fracking in North America.
FT 27th Sept 2018 read more »
Building work has restarted at hundreds of Chinese coal-fired power stations, according to an analysis of satellite imagery. The research, carried out by green campaigners CoalSwarm, suggests that 259 gigawatts of new capacity are under development in China. The authors say this is the same capacity to produce electricity as the entire US coal fleet. The study says government attempts to cancel many plants have failed. According to this study, there was a surge in new coal projects approved at provincial level in China between 2014 and 2016. This happened because of a decentralisation programme that shifted authority over coal plant construction approvals to local authorities. The report says that at present China has 993 gigawatts of coal power capacity, but the approved new plants would increase this by 25%.
BBC 26th Sept 2018 read more »