Activists Plot Mass Invasion of Coal Plant After Climate Camp Vote
August 31, 2009
Detailed plans are being drawn up for a mass invasion of Britain‘s third most polluting power station.
The unfolding plot follows an unprecedented vote by thousands of climate activists to determine the target of their next mass direct action, with e.on’s Ratcliffe plant in Nottinghamshire named the clear winner in an announcement made at the Climate Camp last night (Sunday).
The Camp - currently pitched on Blackheath in London - held the online poll over recent weeks. More than 2000 activists voted, with Ratcliffe establishing a clear margin of victory over Drax in Yorkshire. Groups are now forming to plot the shutdown of the station by thousands of people who will descend on the e.on plant by land, water and air.
The invasion will take place on October 17-18, but logistical preparations are already under way at the Blackheath Camp. Teams are investigating Google Earth maps and poring over detailed intelligence on how best to enter the power plant and safely shut it down. Earlier this year, 114 people were arrested for conspiracy to commit aggravated trespass at the power station. No charges have been brought in connection with incident.
The remarkable success of last Wednesday’s ’swoop’ on the Blackheath site is being seen as a model for the October invasion. Under the noses of police officers deployed across London who were determined to learn the location of the Camp before Wednesday, activists used sophisticated communication techniques to outwit the Met and set up the Camp. Now those skills will be used to enter the Ratcliffe site and stop emissions from the site‘s 200m-high chimney.
This week’s Climate Camp has seen hundreds of people who’ve never before taken direct action undergoing training and committing to taking part in the October invasion. They will be joined by thousands of other Campers and by members of Plane Stupid, Climate Rush, Rising Tide who have shut down airports, business conferences and power stations and gained access to protected sites like the roof of Parliament.
Charlotte Johnson, one of the individuals organising the action said: “The thousands of people who are at Climate Camp now are getting informed, trained in direct action tactics and are planning how we are going to close Ratcliffe in October. We will shut Ratcliffe by land, water and air. People will breask into the plant and occupy the chimney. We are doing this because it’s time to imagine a world without coal. But coal power stations must be shut permanently if we are to have any chance of stopping catastrophic climate change.
“Climate change is happening now, and the political and economic systems are not preventing it. So we are taking power into our hands. Unlike politicians, we are ordinary people who, when we come together, do extraordinary things. We're not going to sit back and watch governments talk away our future. We're going to take action now.”
Paul Roberts who voted for Ratcliffe to win said: "I voted for Ratcliffe because it's owned by E.ON who are also the owners of the Kingsnorth station in Kent. I want to target E.ON because it's the energy company that is doing the most to dupe the public with greenwash. And it's colluding with the government so it can carry on its polluting business as usual and protect its profits. We're already planning this action and this morning I was trained in non-violent direct action techniques at Climate Camp to help me prepare to shut down the station in a couple of months."
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Notes to Editors
- People can go online and visit www.thegreatclimateswoop.org for more information and to get involved.