Controversial plans to chop down a German forest to build a vast coal mine should proceed because Germany needs the polluting fuel to keep the lights on, according to the chief of the country’s state secretary for energy. Dozens of treehouses built and occupied by campaigners for years have been recently cleared by police to make way for plans by energy firm RWE, which owns Hambach forest near Cologne, to expand its nearby opencast coal mine. Environmental groups have rallied against the project, which they argue would lock the country into higher carbon emissions, just as a government-appointed commission simultaneously debates a timeline for Germany to phase out coal. “It should go ahead,” said Thomas Bareiß when asked by the Guardian if the Hambach clearance should proceed when the “coal exit commission” is still deliberating.
Guardian 1st Oct 2018 read more »
More than 200 academics have signed a letter calling for a judicial review of “absurdly harsh” prison sentences handed to three fracking protesters on Wednesday. An open letter, started by staff at the University of Sussex says that the jail terms of between 15 and 16 months for halting a convoy of lorries carrying shale drilling equipment “set a dangerous precedent”.
Independent 1st Oct 2018 read more »