Scottish campaigners greeted with delight the news that Danish energy giant Dong Energy had dropped plans to develop new coal fired power stations at Hunterston in Ayrshire, and also in Germany.

The case for new coal fired power stations in Scotland is crumbling after the developer pulled out citing financial difficulties and a strategic change of direction towards lower carbon investments.

Following Dong’s announcement that it would prioritise investments in renewables, and last week’s news that Eon energy had postponed plans for a coal-fired power station at Kingsnorth in Kent, Liz Murray, Head of Scottish Campaigns at World Development Movement commented: “It’s clearer than ever that dirty coal is a risky investment. Energy companies are finding it impossible to justify such climate-trashing developments. Banks that continue to invest heavily in coal such as Scotland’s RBS should also beware the writing on the wall, and switch their investments to support renewable energy instead.

Friends of the Earth Scotland’s Chief Executive Duncan McLaren added: “We are delighted that Dong has withdrawn. But dirty coal is more than a bad investment, it’s also bad policy. The Scottish Government must move swiftly to ensure that no new proposal for a coal fired power station can come forward without a full and immediate commitment to carbon capture and storage.”

Dong and Peel Energy had been proposing a 1.6GW coal fired power station at Hunterston, which would be later ‘retro-fitted’ with carbon capture technology. Local campaigners had initiated legal action against the Scottish Government for including the Hunterston plans in the National Planning Framework at a late stage, without adequate advance consultation. Environment and development groups had condemned the proposals which would have dramatically added to Scotland’s greenhouse gas emissions, despite the Government’s world leading climate legislation.

ENDS

For media enquiries please contact:

Juliet Swann
Friends of the Earth Scotland
jswann@foe-scotland.org.uk
T: 0131 243 2722

1. Friends of the Earth Scotland is an independent charity which exists to help people in Scotland look after the planet for everyone’s future. We think globally and act locally in Scotland, delivering solutions to climate change by enabling and empowering people to take both individual and collective action. We offer help to people with the big things in life helping to sustain a healthy society and environment. We believe that all of our children’s futures will be better because of what we do. www.foe-scotland.org.uk

2. The story is front page news in Denmark: DONG scraps coal projects and firing up the green revolution