“HUGE” Pollution in Whitehaven Harbour Should Be Red Light for New Mining – Will it?

 Image: Pollution continues to pour into Whitehaven Harbour – campaigners wonder if this  mine water pollution would be tolerated with no end in sight in harbours in the Home Counties.

Sent to Press today….


Whitehaven Harbour Mine Water “Huge” Pollution is Red Flag for new West Cumbrian Coal Mine.

Campaigners are urging a halt to new coal mining plans and redoubled efforts to find and control the source of the pollution which has been pouring into Whitehaven Harbour at least since December 2022. 

Keep Cumbrian Coal in the Hole, a Radiation Free Lakeland campaign have, with the help of Tim Farron MP for Westmorland and Lonsdale gained sight of the data from the Environment Agency samples taken in Whitehaven Harbour on December 20th 2022.  

Campaigners asked two independent experts for comment on the data.  Marine Pollution expert Tim Deere-Jones said that: “I’d be very confident in raising coal mining as the source…It would certainly be relevant to demand that the mine owners, Env Agency, MMO, NWS, DEFRA et’ al’ get on the case and identify exactly where the contaminated  water came from, boreholes? faults in the seabed geology? old mine workings on land? If they refuse or fudge, it would be legitimate to postulate “in the absence of empirical evidence to the contrary” that all three (especially faulting and boreholing) were possible causes, that the new coal mine plan should therefore be abandoned and that clearly any sub seabed GDF in the relevant coal field was clearly and very strongly contra-indicated.”

Dr Marco Kaltofen a US based environmental scientist with 30 years experience in environmental, workplace and product safety investigations has said: “no wonder it turned orange, those iron levels are H U G E. Cadmium, ammonia, and other metals (including nickel) are all elevated as well. They should have tested for arsenic and mercury too, especially given the elevated cadmium; but they did not. I strongly suggest having mercury and arsenic tested in the water. A separate sample of suspended solids should also be collected and tested for all of these parameters (plus radium, thorium and uranium) in addition to the water sample already done.

The original material was likely highly acidic, but would be neutralized once it hits seawater.”

Keep Cumbrian Coal in the Hole ask the following:

  1.  To reiterate our plea to the Coal Authority not to issue West Cumbria Mining with a licence to mine onshore at Whitehaven
  2. To remove Mayor Mike Starkie as the lead investigator into the harbour pollution. Mayor Starkie has vested interests in directing investigations away from the existing impacts of West Cumbria Mining’s borehole investigations and future impacts of mass void removal (for coal and nuclear waste) in the Whitehaven area.
  3. Dr Kaltofen strongly suggests having mercury and arsenic tested in the water as well as a separate sample of suspended solids collected and tested for all of these parameters plus radium, thorium and uranium.
  4. Allonby Bay has just been chosen by The Rt Hon Dr Thérèse Coffey, Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs,as one of only three Highly Protected Marine Areas in the UK. These sites will be designated before 6th July 2023. The intention of the HPMA is to allow the marine environment to fully recover from any harmful activities. The HPMA at Allonby Bay has been established to complement the existing marine protected areas of which Whitehaven is one.   The contaminated water pouring into Whitehaven harbour water will have been polluting Allonby Bay just several miles away  since December.  Whitehaven itself is a Marine Conservation Zone.  Do these so called “Gold Star”  protections mean nothing? 

Tim Farron MP has listened to concerns and is “ pleased to confirm that I have written to the EA Manager for Cumbria concerning testing.  I have written again to the Chief Executive of the Coal Authority to forward the opinions you have received and I have written to the Secretary of State for DEFRA to urge her to investigate the efficacy of the Highly Protected Marine Area .”

Russian Government in Collaboration with Owen Hegarty’s Tigers Realm Coal Trample Over Indigenous People.

The new Director of West Cumbria Mining Owen Hegarty is also the founder of Tigers Realm Coal. The TIgers Realm Coal company propaganda shows images of handouts to indigenous people from the coal mine developers who themselves have taken tens of £Millions from the Russian government. In contrast to the company propaganda showing indigenous folk recieving handouts the truth is that indigenous peoples of Far East Russia fought Owen Hegarty’s coal mines because they knew that the land on which they depend to survive would be trashed.

This is translated from Russian 2015

Colleagues and compatriots! For more than a week now, members of the Altar community and their families have been confronting the contractor of the Chinese Shenhua coal mining company in Chukotka – CJSC Chukotskaya Torgovaya Kompaniya (ChTK).

To transport heavy machinery and equipment for work in the coal fields of the former Beringovsky district, ChTK uses spawning rivers, containers are dragged along them, and caterpillar transport goes. And all this happens during the spawning period of salmon and the period of reproduction and feeding by birds and animals of chicks and animals.

So far, this has only been stopped by blocking the path of technology, it was done by members of the Altar community, who were not afraid to resist the big money and resources of companies such as ChTK, the administrative and power resources of the government of the Chukotka Autonomous Okrug.

The history of this confrontation has been going on for several years. It all started with the North Pacific Coal Company ( a subsidiary of Tigers Realm Coal) which since 2007 has been engaged in the so-called “exploration” of coal deposits, while not giving a damn about work in the area where the northernmost spawning grounds of sockeye salmon are located, according to biologists, it was necessary to create nature protection zones for protection a long time ago. nesting and habitats of rare birds.

This area is also the southern tip of the long-suffering Beringia International Park, which has not yet been created, largely due to the unwillingness of the district authorities.

For more than two years, the head of the Altar family and tribal community has been trying to draw the attention of local, district, federal authorities to the barbaric ways and methods that companies work in these fields, acts were drawn up, photographs and videos were taken, but as we see, the authorities of Chukotka it is necessary to quickly sell the wealth of the country, without looking back at the people who live in the district.

We tried to appeal to both the President and V.V. Putin, we also appealed to the branch of United Russia, but this had no effect.

Now the situation is already in the red, critical zone.

Members of the community blocked the passage of vehicles along the rivers in Ushakov Bay. They are being threatened by ChTK employees, they are threatening to send a helicopter with the FSB, the police and to open criminal cases against them. At the same time, they refer to the Water Code, that it is supposedly possible to carry out work in the 20-meter zone of the river, mind you, the spawning river of a valuable breed of fish !!!

And do not believe that the essence of the conflict boils down to the fact that once again they came to “get rich” and “give us a job”, and here we are climbing with our fat people, almost dragging “progressive humanity” into the Stone Age. The situation is just the opposite – the Altar community, the indigenous people are for the construction of roads, so that there is work and children can learn new specialties, so that we finally move from an abandoned state to a normal human life, but at the same time preserve our nature because we want to live on our land and raise our children!!!

Colleagues, countrymen!!! We appeal to you with a proposal to support our fellow tribesmen !!!

People Ask: Will Boris Johnson Use the G7 to Scrap the Coal Mine? Mmmm… Maybe Not, As the Coal Boss is Govnt Nuke Dump Advisor

Pundits a-plenty are asking if Boris will bolster his climate credentials by scrapping the £160m coal mine. The CEO of West Cumbria Mining must be having a little smile. He has much bigger and much more dangerous fish to fry. When the question of the coal mine comes up at the G7 it can be guaranteed that Boris will make some climate noises but will keep entirely schtum about the fact that his government has asked the coal boss to come up with costings for the biggest and most dangerous deep pit in UK (not to mention world) history.

The deep pit in question is the hole for a deep nuclear dump to “dispose” of heat generating nuclear wastes. The coal boss has advised government use the same company as his coal mine for its giant Tunnel Boring Machines. These expensive machines usually have to be abandoned underground so having a new job to move onto (in the same place under the Irish Sea) could be lucrative for someone?

The estimated cost however at £1.7 billion for a big deep nuclear pit (thats just the cost for the hole not anything else) is way more expensive than for Mark Kirkbride’s coal mine at £160 million.

Don’t believe it ? Then check this out.   https://www.research.manchester.ac.uk/portal/files/182559187/FULL_TEXT.PDF    (Mark Kirkbride’s contribution is at 233 onwards)

The heat generating wastes planned to go in the deep pit are the most lethal material on the planet. The plan is to dump them, leave them without supervision, without cooling and without repackaging. It is guaranteed that they will continue to heat up underground, under the Irish Sea or the land. The planetary destroying wastes then would breach the supposed safety barriers and there would be no way to stop them entering the biosphere.

This issue is being ignored by media and NGOs, but hey ho the circus is in town.

Photo by Golnar sabzpoush rashidi on Pexels.com

TAKE ACTION! We Have Already Delayed the Coal Mine … Now We Need to Stop It.


Dear Friends,THANKS TO ALL who are donating and sharing, writing and campaigning –

without you this mine would already be underway!!  We have delayed it repeatedly,  now we need to stop it.

The Bad News!Robert Jenrick MP the Communities Secretary has decided not to call in the County Council’s Yes vote for a public inquiry.  

The Good News!The UK and Ireland Nuclear Free Local Authorities have put their weight behind our campaign by urging Cumbria County Council to reconsider the impact of the expected subsidence of the Irish Sea bed and resuspension of the decades worth of radioactive wastes from Sellafield which are currently embedded in the silts of the Cumbrian Mud Patch.

Our fight against the mine continues and there are a couple of ACTIONS  people can take right now.

1.  Write to Cumbria County Council urging them to take the advice of the UK and Ireland Nuclear Free Local Authorities and to reconsider the impact of the expected subsidence of the Irish Sea bed and resuspension of the decades worth of radioactive wastes from Sellafield  which are currently embedded in the silts of the Cumbrian Mud Patch.  

On Radio Cumbria’s Mike Zeller show of the 7th January Cumbria County Council were quoted as saying that the radioactive risks of induced seismicity and subsidence are acceptable.   This is an outrageous abdication of the Council’s responsibility to the public’s health and safety.  

Ask Cumbria County Council not to issue a final Decision Notice but to take this opportunity to reconsider the expected subsidence and radioactive impacts of this coal mine.  

A Template Letter is below – please do write in your own words – there are many reasons why the Council should not issue a Decision Notice – as well as the radioactive impacts there are the climate impacts too.

2.  We are looking at a new legal challenge on radioactive impacts of this coal mine. As before, all monies go direct to top lawyers Leigh Day who have already successfully repeatedly delayed the plan.  The legal challenge would be in my name (Marianne B) on behalf of Keep Cumbrian Coal in the Hole– Please do share ……..and if you can (I know times are so tough) …..please donate.  DONATE HERE – HELP STOP THE CUMBRIAN COAL MINE 

TEMPLATE LETTER (for inspiration) EMAIL Geoffrey.Cook@cumbria.gov.uk

Dear Councillor Geoff Cook Woodhouse Colliery Application Reference No. 4/17/9007

Thank you for voting against the amended coal mine plan.  
I have heard that the Secretary of State will not be calling this decision in for a public inquiry.  
I would be very grateful if Cumbria County Council would take the advice of the UK and Ireland Nuclear Free Local Authorities and reconsider the impact of the expected subsidence of the Irish Sea bed and resuspension of the decades worth of radioactive wastes from Sellafield (currently embedded in the silts of the Cumbrian Mud Patch).  

On Radio Cumbria’s Mike Zeller show of the 7th January 2021 Cumbria County Council were quoted as saying that the radioactive risks of induced seismicity and subsidence are acceptable.   This would seem to be an abdication of the Council’s responsibility to the public’s health and safety.  Please ensure that Cumbria County Council do not issue a final Decision Notice until the expected subsidence and radioactive impacts of this coal mine have been fully considered,  including the ongoing internal review into Sellafield’s Freedom of Information response regarding the Responsibility for Radioactive Wastes on the Irish Sea Bed.

Thank you

Yours sincerely, 

Copy sent to Leader of Cumbria County Council Stuart Young Stewart.Young@cumbria.gov.uk

Ghost of Christmas Future?

Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come?

While West Cumbria Mining has bigged up its business credentials to the general public and starry eyed politicians, creative accounting means that the“generational opportunity” that will help the area “prosper both nationally and internationally”.  is classed as a “small business.” Small businesses can use exemption clauses so they do not need to file full company accounts.  Not all small businesses use this exemption but WCM has chosen to.  This is despite spending what must be £millions on Public Relations alone.  At the County Council planning meeting back in March 2019, political lobbyist Tony Lodge boasted that on behalf of WCM he  had successfully lobbied high profile government ministers and local politicians.  No doubt the wheels were somewhat greased by the large donations made to the Conservative party by PR company New Century Media for whom Tony Lodge is Director of Political Communications

Mark Jenkinson’s (MP for Workington) article “The Case for Coal”  first published in Conservative Home looks very much like the articles West Cumbria Mining’s  political advisor Tony Lodge has written.  All of these articles extoll the “green” credentials of metallurgical (coking) coal and are disingenuous not least by missing the point that not all coking coal is equal, not all is fit for making steel.  Especially not coal with high sulphur and ash content such as would come out of WCM’s planned mine near Sellafield.   

There is a question mark over where the initial cash injection for West Cumbria Mining has come from. We know it has come via EMR Capital but from who, from where?  Although the public are not privvy to where the initial cash injection of millions came from, the paperwork has already been put into place by WCM to ensure that when it all goes pear shaped WCM’s land and assets go to EMR Capital who are acting on behalf of other parties. EMR identify themselves as the Security Trustee which means they are acting for someone else. We would dearly like to know who but, of course, it is deliberately hidden from view by EMR.

West Cumbria Mining executives must love a good party as the important documents detailing how assets would be protected from creditors are witnessed by one Bradley Herd – occupation – “Bartender”

24 Nov 2020Registration of charge 071433980002, 
the document can be found here https://find-and-update.company-information.service.gov.uk/company/07143398/filing-history

This document means that creditors, the businesses who supply WCM may find that when the coal mine goes pop (to resurface Phoenix like into another more lucrative incarnation?), that their money has gone off for Christmas to the Cayman Islands protected account of EMR Capital.  Likewise the former Haig Museum which was refurbished with £millions of Heritage Lottery Money and other monies from the public purse would be owned by some person/s unknown hidden in a Cayman Islands account (there must be a story to tell about how the incredible and socially important Haig Mining Museum mysteriously lost the will to live and was handed over lock stock and barrel to West Cumbria Mining?) 

Its no secret that mine companies use administration or bankruptcy laws to avoid paying out on health damage, remediation or just to consolidate their assets and the CEO of West Cumbria Mining has a track record of using administration.  As CEO of geotechnical company Itsmoil based in Uckfield, Sussex, Mark Kirkbride oversaw administration which was used to “give protection from creditors.”  It’s not illegal if you have the right advice from the right lawyers but it is unethical.  The public and those promoting West Cumbria Mining should be aware of this Ghost of Christmas Future. It is an inevitability if this mine goes ahead that assets will be “protected from creditors”.   Those opposing the mine have been told to “get a conscience”  and that the best ever Christmas present ever for Cumbria is a new deep coal mine under the Irish Sea near Sellafield.   

Bah Humbug.   

Terrifying Nuclear Potential of Cumbrian Coal Mine

Below is the excellent presentation by Sami which will be delivered to the Committee making the decision on the coal mine tomorrow. This weeks news coverage of the consequences of an accident at Sellafield should alert Councillors to the madness of increasing the risks .

https://www.nwemail.co.uk/news/18752191.sellafield-nuclear-disaster-spread-across-cumbria—new-map-shows/. – this rather underplays the consequences of an accident at Sellafield – the Council should take heed.

Sami Moisha

Presentation for Development Control 

Committee on Oct 2nd  

My name is Sami Moisha, my family are from Cumbria, I currently live in Lancaster.   I wish to object strongly to this proposal in terms of environmental impact as it affects my own safety and health.  The proposal also affects the safety and health of many hundreds of thousands of others through the certainty of accelerating climate change and the terrifying potential for generating a nuclear emergency at Sellafield.

In the terms of the National Policy Planning Framework – I wish to object to this application on environmental grounds affecting public safety on the grounds that – 

 A] It is not environmentally acceptable  – and that none of the planning conditions or obligations can make it so 

and that 

B] There are no community benefits  – that can outweigh the potential for a nuclear emergency at the Sellafield site.

Essentially there are no planning conditions which could ever make this application environmentally acceptable.

  • Deep mining under the sea to within 8km of Sellafield [WCM data] poses massive environmental danger via the subsidence which is inevitable  – and more significantly  – the potential for earth tremors damaging the facilities at the nuclear site.  
  • The local geology is known to be massively faulted.  The geology that WCM plans to mine is completely connected to the geology underneath Sellafield which houses one of the largest stockpiles of nuclear material in Europe, if not the world.
  • Any earth tremor caused by mining or subsidence would have catastrophic effects in terms of a nuclear emergency bringing massive danger to life over a vast area
  • Such a nuclear emergency would affect not only the Cumbrian coast, but the entire UK and other nations as well.  Remember Chernobyl – and that effect here in Cumbria.  Have neighbouring nations been consulted on this proposal?
  • While no one can predict exactly what potential subsidence or earth tremor may result from the mining operations – it is this very real but unknown potential that is the threat.
  • Committee members simply cannot approve this application because they cannot answer for the public safety /community benefit of the hundreds of thousands of people affected by the potential for a radioactive emergency incident.  
  • This Committee is thus in the surreal position of having numerous detailed proposals relating to dust, footpaths and tree planting around the WCM site coupled with a complete disregard for a potential major nuclear incident.

This renders the application totally unacceptable on environmental grounds.

The public safety issues for Cumbria/UK and beyond are simply too great for this mine to proceed.

Request for Sight of the Officers Report into Coal Mine Plan

Clogg Shop – Whitehaven

The extraordinary cancellation of the August 20th meeting at the last minute raises some questions.

One of the comments we have seen is that “It is a distinct possibility that the report was not to the liking of at least one but probably more influential Councillors on the Committee. It may have even recommended No but it could equally have invoked even more restrictive conditions that, if enforced, would have rendered the proposal uneconomic. I am refering to the definition of metallurgical coal in terms of characteristics and chemical content.”

Certainly that is something that Keep Cumbrian Coal have been flagging up – the fact that this coking coal mine’s whole premise was based on the “high quality coking coal for steel manufacture”. The amended planning application from the developers asks for a relaxation of that industry standard (ie it would produce duff coking coal) and a removal of the caveat that the coal should be used for steel.

So what was in the Officers Report and Recommendations that proved so divisive that this mere “amendment” to the planning application has been kicked into the long grass – until at least October we are told. That could be good news – but it also means that West Cumbria Mining WITH ITS BOTTOM IN SUSSEX, ITS BRAIN IN SINGAPORE, ITS WALLET IN THE CAYMAN ISLANDS and ITS HEART IN THE NUCLEAR INDUSTRY still has its clogs firmly embedded under the table in West Cumbria.

Article in the Ecologist Exposes Links between West Cumbria Mining and Radioactive Waste Management

Trojan Cumbrian Coal Mine ?


Dear Friends,

Thank you for so much to everyone who has contributed to the CrowdJustice page to fight the first deep coal mine in the UK in 30 years.  We have succeeded so far – now we need to put a full stop to the plan!!  

An article published this week in The Ecologist exposes yet another layer to the myriad of reasons why this coal mine must be stopped.  

An extract from the article states :

Nuclear Safety campaigners feel that it is of great concern that the Conservative government made no attempt to be transparent about appointing the CEO of West Cumbria Mining to the Committee on Radioactive Waste Management in the very same month that they gave the green light to the same CEO’s Coal Mine project.  This is at the very least a direct conflict of interest. 

They argue that it is shocking that this appointment regarding radioactive wastes has been made at all, given the fact that one of Radiation Free Lakeland’s major objections to West Cumbria Mining’s coal project is that there is a strong likelihood of radioactive consequences – from subsidence and resuspension of radioactive and chemical material from the Cumbrian Mud Patch  –  and from induced seismicity near the Sellafield site.

Please do keep sharing the petition to Stop the Coal Mine and if you have time ….Please do send in letters to members of the planning committee asking them to scrap this dangerous plan for the first deep coal mine in the UK in 30 years.  Even if you have written before – write again to remind the councillors to say a big fat NO!! 

Quote – West Cumbria Mining: Planning Application Ref 4/17/9007: 

Woodhouse Colliery, High Road, Whitehaven

and remember to put your name and address.   People can also ask to speak at the meeting which will be taking place online and via telephone.  

PETTION https://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/no-new-coal-mine-in-cumbria

With Many Thanks – We CAN Stop this mine with your help!!

Wainwright and the Coal Mine


This is the latest comment on an article in the Times about Wainwright and his famous Coast to Coast walk.

“I wonder what Wainwright would have made of the plan to install a massive new noisy coal yard and rail track at the start of this walk? The plan to open the first deep coal mine in the UK in decades under the sea at the beautiful St Bees Heritage Coastline is a national scandal that has gone weirdly under the radar. Not least the radar of the conservation bodies who should be up in arms about this. Instead it was nuclear safety campaigners who first raised the alarm – and continue to do so. This mine would extend to 5 miles from Sellafield, which houses the worlds biggest concentration of radioactivity. The nuclear connections don’t stop there. The CEO of the developers West Cumbria Mining has been appointed to the government body tasked with ‘delivering a geological disposal facility’. As well as the CEO of West Cumbria Mining also sitting on this Radioactive Waste Management government committee, the former Operations Director of the coal mine development is now Head of Site Selection at Radioactive Waste Management “Site Selection” for a Geological Disposal Facility (we call it a nuclear dump) may or may not be under the Irish Sea, as Egremont and Ennerdale have also been eyed up. However the truth is that Cumbria is realistically the only place in the UK that is in the frame and Copeland Council who are all in favour of this coal mine have also just opened up discussions with government about the geological dump too. Are they mad? Alfred Wainwright famously called Calder Hall an “atomic carbuncle.” That was in the halcyon days when the nuclear sprawl at Sellafield was so much smaller. There are so many reasons to stop the new coal mine next door.

PLEASE SIGN THE PETITIONhttps://you.38degrees.org.uk/petitions/no-new-coal-mine-in-cumbriaStop the Coal Mine in Cumbria