greenpeace fired up against kusile

Submitted by turbosprout on Tue, 2011-11-08 16:09

Greenpeace protesters outside KusileGreenpeace protesters outside KusileNine Greenpeace activists were arrested yesterday for trespassing and "malicious damage" at the construction site of Eskom's Kusile coal-fired power plant.

Activists chained themselves to the front gate, acting as a decoy, whilst a smaller group made their way through a back entrance and climbed a crane to unfurl a big banner reading "Kusile: climate killer"

Michael Baillie, one of the activists protesting South Africa's "addiction to coal" said that for most South African's the idea of where their electricity comes from doesn't even occur to them. "They switch on a light and don't realise that coal is burning at that moment"

Eskom said that they engage with Greenpeace and other NGO's on climate change, but that they cannot allow illegal entry onto their sites.

On its completion in 2016, Kusile is expected to burn through 17M tons of coal every year, emitting another 37M tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

South Africa is already the globes 16th largest emitter of greenhouse gases and this will cause overall emissions to jump up by another 10 percent.

“We would like to see both South Africa and Eskom taking up renewable energy,” said Greenpeace climate campaigner Melita Steele.

“There is no such thing as clean coal.”

A University of Pretoria study reported Kusile's external costs (like water wastage, health issues, transport costs and damage to the environment) to society are likely to be between R31bn and R60bn.

Read more about the protest on the Greenpeace website

“What other country has such great wind and solar energy opportunities?” asked Baillie. “We don’t need Kusile. We don’t want Kusile. It’s time for the government to invest in renewable energy.”