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Saying 'NO' to Open Cast Mining

fencingA new open-cast coal mine site is about to get underway in beautiful Derbyshire, unless we stop it now.

Lodge House site, which is east of the village of Smalley and spans either side of Bell Lane, is one of seven that UK Coal is to open-cast.

The area is about to be devastated, despite objections from local councils, residents and local environmental groups, but the Secretary of State granted planning permission in 2007.

The 122 hectare site will have one million tonnes of coal ripped out over five years and 'returned back to its natural state' according to UK Coal, however residents fear there may be more to the plot, as they were excluded from parts of the planning meeting on grounds of commercial confidentiality.

UK Coal are one of those companies that looks to maximise their profits by raping the land and profiting from it any way they can - after coal extraction, they return the area to business parks, housing and industrial estates. In some cases they return it to farmland and charge the farmers rent, or on low-grade land grow energy crops according to their website. They are even into windpower, but as yet have still not erected a turbine.

Coal is not clean energy, and with the new onslaught of proposed power stations, UK Coal are looking to cash in on climate devastation and destruction unless we stop them.

The area is rich with wildlife and backs onto Shipley Country Park; some houses, (the sort of place you dream of living in) have been shuttered up and items like toys, dog kennels and other personal bits remain, looking like something from a hurried evacuation from a war zone. UK Coal has stated that the site will be returned to farm land, but they are able to expand beyond the 122 hectares without needing further permission.

To combat open-cast mining, a new action group "Leave it in the Ground" has formed, supported by Earth First! and other environmental groups, that want the government to back down on increasing new coal-fired power stations and stop adding carbon to climate change.