The Cumbrian coal mine is careless diplomacy and economic idiocy. Whitehaven Colliery plan is a dark stain on the UK’s green ambitions and it will soon be obsolete. Britain has sold its climate credibility for a mess of brown pottage. The proposed Whitehaven coal mine in Cumbria has no commercial rationale and will be obsolescent before it ever opens. One can only sympathise with Alok Sharma. The president of Glasgow’s Cop26 “summit to save the world” is entering the last critical phase of talks with China, India and Russia, only to be undercut at home by well-meaning Tory colleagues living in an economic time-warp, and deaf to the higher notes of global statecraft. Over coming weeks, Mr Sharma will strive to conjure some sort of G20 consensus on the hardest of the hard issues: a timetable for the total phase-out of “unabated coal power”, the bedrock requirement for a 1.5-degree world. While he does so, his own country will be debating a brand new mine at Whitehaven Colliery, intended to produce coking coal until the middle of the 21st century. The public inquiry began this week and will run for four weeks, a ghastly torment for Mr Sharma’s negotiating team.
Telegraph 9th Sept 2021 read more »