Open letter to Theresa May and Carwyn Jones

27 January 2017

Wales Green Party supports call for closure of Aberthaw and transition to local Green jobs in open letter to Theresa May and Carwyn Jones

On Saturday 28th January, local residents, campaigners and activists will call for the closure of Aberthaw power station at a peaceful protest organised by United Valleys Action Group, Coal Action Network and Reclaim the Power. 

Aberthaw is one of Europe’s top 30 dirtiest and most toxic power stations. Air pollution from the plant is responsible for an estimated 400 deaths per year in the UK [1]. Particulate matter and NOx are contributing to respiratory illnesses in local residents, and perhaps in those as far away as Swindon. It has also been reported that Aberthaw is Europe’s third biggest emitter of NOx(hazardous pollutants) [2], and just last year was found to be emitting twice the EU legal limit of these pollutants[3]. Additionally, Aberthaw is responsible for 17% of Wales’ greenhouse gas emissions [1].

Alice Hooker-Stroud, leader of the Wales Green Party is supporting the campaign in the form of an open letter to Theresa May and Carwyn Jones [4]. She says:

Aberthaw is now at a crossroads because of the ruling on its pollutant emissions. Coal is on its way out and instead of waiting for the inevitable which will leave hundreds without employment and a gap in our energy strategy, Theresa May and Carwyn Jones need to set a closure date for Aberthaw; amend Government Industrial Strategy to facilitate the transition to a low-carbon energy system; and work together with local communities and trade unions to reskill workers and transition towards green, sustainable energy and employment.

Places like Hull are leading the way in massive skills transfers to thousands of jobs in renewablesThe opportunity for jobs across Wales through renewable generation is huge – thousands of stable and sustainable jobs for our communities. Now is the time to change our energy future, and the future of our local communities.” 

Grenville Ham, Wales Green Party Deputy Leader and an expert on the Renewable Energy industry, said:

“Fossil fuels need to be thrown into the dustbin of history. The health reasons are clear. The potential for job creation in renewables is clear. Our fragile climate can’t take much more. I want the people of Wales to know that there is only one thing stopping our transition from fossil fuels to clean power – politicians who are to unwilling to challenge the multinationals. 

Our politicians have a clear choice. They can deliver the people of Wales improved health, a safer climate, more employment and a chance to break free from the rigged fossil fuel economy, or they can choose to sit back and do nothing and let this industrial con continue at the expense of everyones future.”

[ENDS]

[1] Friends of the Earth Cymru report – Aberthaw Power Stationhttp://foe.cymru/sites/default/files/6507_aberthaw_a4_doc_english_online_V5-ilovepdf-compressed.pdf

[2] http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/one-europes-most-polluting-power-10160318

[3] http://www.itv.com/news/wales/2016-09-21/aberthaw-power-station-pollution-too-high/

[4] Copy of letter available here: http://alicegreenparty.cymru/en/aberthaw-coal-power-station/






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