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Protest halts Dutch power station project

by Staff Writers
The Hague (AFP) Dec 8, 2010
A protest by Greenpeace halted work Wednesday on a coal-fired power station in the Netherlands which the environmental group said would increase the country's carbon-dioxide emissions by a quarter.

Some 20 activists occupied cranes being used to build the plant at Eemsmond on the shores of the Wadden Sea, two of them spending the night in a tent slung 70 metres (220 feet) up between three cranes in temperatures below freezing, Agnes de Rooij, head of Greenpeace's Energy and Climate campaign, said.

Jeroen Brouwers, spokesman for electricity company Essent, which is building the power station, told AFP: "We have stopped the work temporarily for safety reasons."

De Rooij said the militants had enough food and other supplies to enable them to hang on for several days. "They will stay until Essent says it is halting construction."

Brouwers, who described the protest as "irresponsible and dangerous," retorted that "of course" Essent would not abandon work.

Police were having talks with the demonstrators but said they would not intervene as the situation was under control.

The plant will be the biggest in the Netherlands, with a capacity of 1,600 megawatts.

The Wadden Sea, which borders the Netherlands and Germany, is listed by UNESCO as a world heritage site.



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