Cumbria

Whitehaven coal mine opponents stage demonstration

Protest
Image caption Dozens of protesters, some in costume, gathered outside council offices in Kendal

Campaigners opposed to plans for the UK's first new deep coal mine in three decades have been staging a protest.

West Cumbria Mining has proposed to extract coking coal from the seabed off St Bees for processing at Whitehaven's former Marchon chemical works site.

Dozens of campaigners concerned about the environmental impact lobbied county councillors outside the Kendal office.

Cumbria County Council which approved the plan said its decision was subject to a judicial review.

Extinction Rebellion Cumbria said: "The proposed coal mine will emit 8.4 million tonnes of CO2 each year, equivalent to the emissions of more than one million households.

"And the extraction is projected to continue for 50 years - 20 years beyond the date by which the government has committed to achieving net zero carbon emissions (2050)."

Image copyright West Cumbria Mining Company
Image caption Woodhouse Colliery would be the UK's first new deep mine colliery in three decades

Last week, campaign group Keep Cumbrian Coal in the Hole (KCCH) which was recently granted permission for a judicial review.

Cumbria County Council said in a statement: "We understand that this is a matter of significant interest to the public and one upon which people will have strong views.

"Unfortunately it is not possible to comment on any aspect of the West Cumbria Mining decision as it is currently subject to an ongoing legal process known as judicial review."

West Cumbria Mining, which plans to create 500 jobs, said on its website: "As with any change to a local area, there may be decisions that might not suit every individual, but it is our intention to develop a mine which brings significant benefits that the whole community can enjoy for many years to come."

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