Stop New Nuclear newsletter no 10, 3 December 2011
this is our first newsletter since the Stop New Nuclear gathering in Bristol on 5/6 November, where we decided on our next major action. We are all excited about our new plan, and with this newsletter we send you some information about the planned action to surround Hinkley Point on 10 March 2011, followed by a 24 hour blockade until 11 March 2011. All this to mark one year since the beginning of the catastrophe of Fukushima, which is far from over.
No more Fukushimas
Fukushima is the biggest industrial disaster in history, and has brought Japan to its knees. The reactors that went into meltdown in March have now melted through the foundations and 40 years of accumulated nuclear waste is emitting vast amounts of radiation, contaminating the land, sea and air. In desperation, the Japanese government is transporting and burning radioactive rubble all over Japan and exporting highly contaminated food as “aid” to developing countries. Men, women and children are living in highly radioactive areas but they are not being evacuated as they should be. This intense radiation exposure has very serious health consequences for these people.
How has Japan ended up in this dreadful situation? Their government always said “It can’t happen here.” Sound familiar? Powerful political and economic interest groups are gagging the world’s media on this unfolding tragedy. Ordinary people the world over will pay the price.
Since the first civilian reactor started generating in 1954, there has been, on average, a major accident every 14-18 years: Windscale 1957, Three Mile Island1979, Chernobyl 1986, Fukushima 2011.
Stop New Nuclear's answer to the crisis of Fukushima is clear: now new nuclear in Britain and anywhere else! Therefore, our action on "Fukushima day" will be to
Surround and blockade Hinkley Point, Somerset
Hinkley Point is the first of eight proposed sites for nuclear new build to go ahead. We stopped them here before in 1987, and we can do it again in 2012. If they fail at Hinkley, it is unlikely the “nuclear renaissance” will have the momentum to continue.
On the 10th -11th March 2012, one year since the Fukushima nuclear disaster began, we will return to Hinkley to form a human chain around the station to show our determined opposition to new nuclear.
In 2010, dozens of us blockaded the gates at Hinkley. In 2011 hundreds of us blockaded the entrance again. In 2012, thousands of us will surround the power station to say No to new nuclear! Not here, not anywhere!
In October 2011, people pledged to blockade. This time, pledge to bring 5 friends and tell them to do the same. Thousands are needed to surround the station!
Pledge to surround Hinkley Point, to bring five friends, or to blockade Hinkley Point
Help us mobilise
To ‘Surround Hinkley’ is to demand to have a voice in decisions about our energy future. Help to make this a festival of creative resistance with music, art, theatre, banners, and whatever takes your fancy! To mark the end of the ‘Surround’, there will be a gathering at the main gate of Hinkley for a rally and music. You may want to return on the coaches after the action or stay to blockade the gates for 24 hours. With tents and tubes we will remain at the gates to show our solidarity with the people of Japan.
The time to act is now! Join your local anti nuclear campaign, form affinity groups. The Stop New Nuclear Alliance can help by giving training in non-violent direct action, consensus decision- making, spokes councils and advice on transport etc….
In our hundreds, in our thousands we will come together to stop nuclear power at Hinkley Point and dismantle the whole new nuclear agenda! This is the chance to be part of smething massive. JOIN US!
Please help to spread the message by either downloading the flier, or ask us to send you a pack. We welcome some donation to cover postage, but even if you can't - we need to get the message out!
Get in touch with us if you want to organise a minibus or put on a coach.
News from nuclear new build
There was some news at the end of October that EDF is delaying its final investment decision about Hinkley C (and its other planned new nuclear power stations in the UK: Sizewell, Heysham, etc) until the end of 2012. However, EDF still insists that it will submit its application to the Infrastructure Planning Commission soon, and also declared that it wants to start preparing the site for Hinkley C from spring 2012 on. For us, this means two things:
- The next year will be crucial to push EDF to abandon its plans for Hinkley C. We need to step our campaigning to show EDF that it is not a good idea to invest in Hinkley C, and that they should invest in renewable energy instead.
- EDF still wants to prepare the site, which means it wants to destroy the land from spring 2012 on, even though there is not even a final decision whether they will really go ahead with Hinkley C. This shows that a legal challenge to the preliminary works permission is even more important. Stop Hinkley is raising funds for a legal challenge to West Somerset Council's decision to grant EDF permission to carry out preparatory work on the site, even though EDF is still far from a permission to construct the power station itself (and hasn't even made a final decision). Stop Hinkley needs to raise about £15,000 for this legal challenge, to please support Stop Hinkley. More information at http://stophinkley.org/LegChallAppeal.htm.
Nevertheless, EDF went ahead with its application to the Infrastructure Planning Commission (IPC). The IPC has accepted the application, and from Friday, 2 December, there are 28 days for everyone to register that they want to comment on the application. This is only a first registration, and does not need to be accompanied by the detailed objections, but without this registration, you will not be able to object later.
The Infrastructure Planning Commission is also organising events locally near Hinkley Point to explain the process, when to register and how to make a representation to the IPC. They will be held between 10am – 9pm at the following locations:
- Stogursey - Monday 5 December, The Victory Hall, Tower Hill, Stogursey, TA5 1PR
- Cannington - Thursday 8 December, Cannington Village Hall, 2 Brook Street, Cannington, TA5 2HP
- Williton - Friday 9 December, West Somerset House, Killick Way, Williton, TA4 4QA
- North Petherton - Monday 12 December, The Walnut Tree Hotel, North Petherton, TA6 6QA
- Combwich - Tuesday 13 December, Otterhampton Village Hall, Riverside, Combwich, TA5 2QZ
- Bridgwater - Wednesday 14 December, Town Hall, High Street, Bridgwater, TA6 3BL.
More information on the planning process is available on the website of the IPC at http://infrastructure.independent.gov.uk/projects/south-west/hinkley-point-c-new-nuclear-power-station/.
Stop Hinkley will be presenting more than 12,000 petitions against Hinkley Point C at Downing Street on Tuesday, 6 December, at at 1.30pm and at the Department of Energy and Climate Change in London on 6th December at 2.00 pm. Members of Stop Hinkley will be accompanied by Wells MP Tessa Munt and Green Party leader and MP Caroline Lucas. The Department of Energy is at 3 Whitehall Place, London SW1A 2AW. More information in the Stop Hinkley press release at http://stopnuclearpoweruk.net/content/stop-hinkley-campaign-presents-petition-government-against-edf%E2%80%99s-nuclear-plans.
Things are also hotting up at Wylfa, where Horizon, a joint venture of German utility companies RWE and E.on, is planning to build two to three new nuclear reactors. Horizon continue to bully the Jones family of Caerdegog and have applied for compulsory powers to ascertain the suitability of their land for construction. Horizon Nuclear Power (HNP) recently applied to Ofgem for Section D of their Electricity Generation Licence to be “switched on”. Immediately upon approval, HNP applied to Ofgem for consent to exercise their new exploratory rights under the Electricity Act 1989. This would allow a generation licence holder to enter and survey any land to establish whether it would be suitable for the construction of an electricity generation station. It would also give them the power to execute their authority to make compulsory land purchase. On Thursday afternoon 17th November, Richard Jones and his family received a letter in English only from Ofgem informing them of the rights recently granted to HNP to gain access to their land at Caerdegog. Ofgem have failed in their duty under the Welsh Language Act to provide the Jones family with the documents in their own language. Furthermore it is considered unreasonable for any objections to be lodged within a time limit of five working days especially in view of the legal content of the correspondence (see the official consultation at http://www.ofgem.gov.uk/Pages/MoreInformation.aspx?file=Consultation%20on%20Horizon%20Application%20for%20Consent%20to%20use%20Exploratory%20Rights.pdf&refer=Licensing/Work).
Horizon have continued to say that they would only use compulsory powers as a last resort yet they executed their newly acquired authority within days of it being granted.
On behalf of the family, Richard Jones said: “We as a family will resist Horizon’s bullying tactics in the attempted destruction of our heritage, our livelihood and our future.”
See the press release of People Against Wylfa B at http://stopnuclearpoweruk.net/content/nuclear-monster-continues-torment-local-family.
The new action to surround Hinkley, and the 24 hour blockade, will need a lot of money to make them happen. While we don't start with nothing, we are nowhere near what we will need. We are presently working on a budget, but one thing is clear: Please give generously. You can donate online at http://stopnewnuclear.org.uk/donate, or you can send a cheque made payable to Stop New Nuclear to:
Stop New Nuclear
c/o 5 Caledonian Road
London N1 9DX