Green Party of Allerdale and Copeland Voice Opposition to Coal Mine


100_3892-e1498058089210.jpgThe more letters from local Green Party organisations and members sent in opposing the Woodhouse Colliery under the Irish Sea the better! The planning meeting is scheduled for November 1st in Kendal

Please Join in the Resistance ….Write, Write, Organise, Object, Resist!

Ms Rachel Brophy
Planning Officer
Cumbria County Council
Economy, Culture and Environment County Offices
Kendal Cumbria LA9 4RQ

Via email only:

29 August 2017

Dear Ms Brophy,

Re Application Ref: 4/17/9007

Allerdale & Copeland Green Party wish to register objection to West Cumbria Mining’s plans to develop a new metallurgical coal mine at the former Marchon industrial site near Woodhouse, Whitehaven.

Our previous lack of object was conditional on a carbon footprint analysis being carried out, and subsequent cogent evidence that the mine provided a net reduction in carbon emissions.

West Cumbria Mining have not carried out a carbon footprint analysis and we don’t have any evidence of any lifecycle analysis being carried out. The company have also released documents that make it clear that they intend to export much of the coal for use in continental Europe and further afield. Their proposal makes only incidental and vague references to the possibility of a reduction in net carbon emissions.
The full planning document currently being considered by Cumbria County Council raises a number of other serious concerns:
• The projected timeframe and quantity of extraction is at odds with the expectations of overarching climate change legislation – namely the Climate Change Act (2008) –
which introduced legally binding targets to reduce the UK’s greenhouse gas emissions
by at least 80% by 2050 from 1990 levels, and the Paris Agreement.
• The application speaks of a production lifespan of 20-50 years, and a peak extraction
of 2.8 million tonnes a year. Assuming a 40 year life (following construction), and an average of 2 million tonnes a year, that is a total production of 80 million tonnes, which will emit around 175 million tonnes of carbon dioxide.

• The application is in conflict with the approach to considering coal developments in the NPPF. Paragraph 149 of the NPPF states that: “Permission should not be given for the
extraction of coal unless the proposal is environmentally acceptable, or can be made so by planning conditions or obligations; or if not, it provides national, local or community benefits which clearly outweigh the likely impacts to justify the granting of planning permission.”
• The application is incompatible with recent government announcements and consultations on coal phase-out.
• Regulation 22 consultation is required regarding ‘Climatic Factors’ as per the EIA regulations and scoping requirements.
We therefore request that this application be turned down.

Yours sincerely,
Allerdale & Copeland Green Party

Open Invitation to Rally to Keep Cumbrian Coal in the Hole – Bowness tomorrow at 12 noon


one of the banners “Stop Coal, Keep it in the Hole….too near Sellafield”

“At least ∼21% of ML ≥ 1.5 earthquakes between 1970 and 2012 in the UK were anthropogenic.   Since the 1980s the fall in anthropogenic earthquakes was due to the fall in UK coal production.”

Look forward to seeing people tomorrow in Bowness – we will be on the shingle beach (off Glebe rd) – near the kiosks.

Please do bring colourful banners, good cheer and hope that we can stop this strange plan to mine for millions of tonnes of coal so close to Sellafield.  Musicians and music welcome!




Rally 10 Sept @Bowness Bay to Keep Cumbrian Coal in the Hole


Please Join us on sunday 10th September to show opposition to the plan for the first new coal mine in the UK for decades.  It is planned off the beautiful coast @St Bees near the worlds biggest nuclear waste dump @Sellafield.  There has been opposition from many organisations pointing out that this is way too near Sellafield.  The risk of seismic activity is just one of the reasons to stop this diabolic plan but it may be the biggest reason – the crumbling infrastructure at Sellafield is dodgy and dangerous enough without literally undermining and inducing siesmic activity  by mining for coal under the Irish Sea bed just a few miles away.

This plan may be going before councillors as soon as the 20th September.  So far it has attracted little vehement criticism by media pundits and it has to be said hardly an eyebrow has been raised in the press.   We have to ask WHY?  We have to raise a banner against this plan and protect our precious Lakes from becoming a World Nuclear Heritage Site courtesy of King Coal.  Please join us at Bowness Bay on Sunday 10th Sept from 12 noon.   Bring banners, bring music, bring yourselves, bring good cheer, bring hope that we can stop this plan in its tracks.

(please print out the banner above and display in your window etc to let people know)

Yesterday at the West Cumbria Mining Open Day

The Chief Executive Officer Mark KirkBride insists that there will be no induced Siesmic activity from the coal mining and that the close proximity to Sellafield is not a problem …but refused to be videoed or recorded saying that.
He said that  there is no requirement in this planning application for any mention of Siesmic activity but also said that they have sent in documentation to the Office for Nuclear Regulation “for approval. ” I asked if we could have sight of that documentation  to inform our response to CCC (which needs to be in by 10th July) but no apparently we cannot have sight of that.
Also the lifecycle carbon footprint is not yet available for public to view and from what the CEO said it is pretty meaningless anyway as it stops short of the coking process, the carbon footprint of which is “the responsibility of the steel producers.”   Not all the coal mined will be for “coking’ (metallurgical)..according to the company’s Environmental Statement
“At full annual production the mine will extract:
  • 2.43 million tonnes of metallurgical coal;
  • 350,000 tonnes of lower grade ‘middlings’ coal; and
  • 150,000 tonnes of rock overburden

Metallurgical and middlings coal will go to the port of Redcar for export to European steel and industrial plants.”

This is planned to continue for 50 years accessing new coal drifts using the old sulphur (anhydrite ) mine entrance at St Bees
  • 80% of the coal mined is for export.
The CEO  says the sparks we can see clearly on their own video of “modern mining methods” will not cause explosion or fire (despite the Whitehaven mining area being notorious for methane)
We leafleted in Whitehaven and did some banner waving From what West Cumbrian Mining have been saying we should have been pelted out of town with rotten eggs.    It is clear that their claim that over  97% of people locally are in favour is wildly optimistic, certainly we spoke to a lot  of people who are at least dubious about it despite the persuasive “green” credentials plus the shameless bribery of jobs and good times ahead.
The lack of scrutiny over this plan is scary.
If planning permission is granted this vast new coal mine “Woodhouse Colliery would be the first new deep coal mine in the UK for more than 30 years.”