At an event organised by nine organisations looking to make people’s feelings about the importance of acting against climate change known, more than 1000 people joined hands to make a ‘Mili-band’ around Kingsnorth power station.
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A new campaign launched by environmental campaign group Greenpeace is calling on consumers to take steps to help increase awareness about the detrimental effects that the footwear industry can have on the world’s rainforests.
The government has given the go ahead for a new generation of coal fired power stations with the caveat that carbon capture and storage technology must be installed by 2025.
As their contribution to Earth Day, yesterday saw the launch of Greenpeace’s new video which aims to inspire watchers to become climate activists. Earth Day began in 1970, and was the brain child of Senator Gaylord Nelson, who decided to begin a campaign to kickstart public awareness and action about the environmental issues affecting the planet.
After permitting farmers to grow Monsanto’s GM maize variety MON 810 since 2005, Ilse Aigner, Germany’s Agricultural Minister has announced the country’s decision to ban further growth of the genetically engineered crop. This decision, Aigner added, is based on science, not politics, as they have concerns that the variety could be a threat to the environment.
Germany will join Austria, who banned the import of another GM variety produced by Monsanto in July 2008, MON 863, after reports of rats that had eaten the maize suffering damage to internal organs; Hungary, France and Greece, in refusing to grow the variety, which the biotech industry comments is as safe as traditional maize varieties.
Major energy companies E-on and EDF are putting pressure on the government regarding renewable energy development. They say that unless the government reduces the amount of projects and funding planned for wind farms and wind energy generation, they may be forced to rethink plans to invest in a new round of nuclear power plants.
Greenpeace have long been concerned about the relationship between nuclear and renewable technologies, and as reported in the Guardian, head of the energy solutions unit at Greenpeace, Nathan Argent, commented that Greenpeace has
“always said that nuclear power will undermine renewable energy and will damage the UK’s efforts to tackle climate change – now EDF agrees.”
Greenpeace opposes nuclear power, stating that it is not the solution to climate change. They also bring attention to the “incompetent at best” methods of nuclear waste disposal for years.
In an era where most of the population is well aware of what happened at Chernobyl, and those that didn’t live through it have seen films and photographs and heard stories of what has been left behind, perhaps there is a cautionary tale here that the people at the top of the energy companies are conveniently ignoring. It’s all too easy to gloss over the mistakes and accidents of the past as if they didn’t happen, and with a rationale that they have the solution to dwindling reserves of fossil fuels, and arguments that when run at capacity, nuclear is safe, and with no CO2 produced when energy is generated from it, no wonder the governments turn their heads.
Let’s hope future projects for renewable energy don’t end up being another casualty of consumerism, because let’s face it, if people needed less energy, renewables alone might have a chance to show their worth.
A current campaign by environmental activist group Greenpeace has seen them purchase a plot of land lying across the area where development is planned to take place to extend Heathrow Airport.
The ‘Airplot’ campaign aims to stop the expansion through the proposed building of the third runway at the airport, action which Friends of the Earth have also commented on, stating that the expansion “is a hammer blow for UK climate targets that will shatter Gordon Brown’s international reputation on the environment”.
The campaign already has the backing of impersonator Alistair McGowan and actress Emma Thompson, among others, and Greenpeace is urging the public to join the campaign to help prevent Heathrow being able to claim the title of ‘biggest carbon footprint in the UK’.
The planning process for the project is likely to go on for years, and Greenpeace advises that there are many stages along the way for people to get involved with and do their bit to try and veto the development. To read more about the campaign, visit the Greenpeace website.