Delegates to a nuclear suppliers’ conference taking place in central London this morning (Monday) were greeted by ten anti-nuclear activists displaying banners calling for a boycott of energy giant
Électricité de France (EDF), the organisers of the conference.
The campaigners had travelled from Suffolk, Wiltshire and London to attend the hour-long demonstration, organised by Kick Nuclear (part of the Stop Nuclear Power Network), outside the Queen Elizabeth II (QEII) Conference Centre in Westminster. In addition to leafleting visitors to the conference; the activists, some of whom were dressed in white overalls, targeted delegates arriving at a World Nuclear Association symposium taking place opposite, as well as members of the public.
Debt-ridden EDF (85%-owned by the French taxpayer) is steaming ahead with its plans to build new nuclear reactors at four sites in England, the first of which would be at Hinkley Point in Somerset. Even before any planning application has been submitted for a new reactor at Hinkley, and well before the ill-fated European Pressurised Reactor (EPR), designed by French multi-national Areva, is likely to be approved by safety authorities in the UK (or any other country), EDF has begun to leave its mark on the landscape. The company has spent the past few months drilling and carrying out underground explosions and tests at the greenfield site earmarked for Hinkley C, which lies adjacent to two existing reactors situated a few miles north of Bridgwater, on the north Somerset coast.
Activists visiting the site on Sunday as part of a weekend gathering organised by Stop Hinkley saw at first hand how badger setts had been recently filled in with cement. They saw where EDF intends to continue to wreak its trail of destruction on this beautiful landscape, including the tearing down of ancient hedgerows and the loss of habitats for rare species of bat and other wildlife.
Demo at Hinkley Point (D. Viesnik) *
Badger setts cemented in (D. Viesnik) *
The next national gathering of the Stop Nuclear Power Network will take place in Bristol on the weekend of 23-24 October 2010. For more details, contact nonewnuclear [at] aktivix.org
Boycott EDF website: http://boycottedf.org.uk
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