VICTORY! Greenpeace shuts down a New Zealand coal plant for good

Feature story - April 9, 2007
AUCKLAND, New Zealand — To be or not to be? Well, the answer for New Zealand's Marsden B coal plant is not to be. The struggle against Marsden B has seen a nine day occupation, high court challenges, protest marches, record numbers of public submissions, public meetings, the emergence of NGOs, bumper stickers, a demarcation and a pirate radio station.

Three Greenpeace protesters occupying the plant wave from the roof of Marsden B to crowds of local people protesting below.

The demise of Marsden B is a huge win for the climate and for the thousands of New Zealanders who opposed refiring the disused monster on coal. Local residents, local Iwi, Greenpeace and many other local and national environmental groups have been fighting the proposed station for over two years.

It's another nail in the coffin for dirty old coal and it is yet another vindication of peaceful protest and environmental activism.

While the iron is hot the Government must now act to prevent a repeat of this costly exercise. They must ensure no new coal fired power station proposals are even entertained, phase out existing coal as soon as possible and commit to a 100 per cent renewable electricity supply. The time is now.

The announcement we now await is that Mighty River Power will also abandon its related court action. The wayward SOE is set to  appeal the landmark case in which Greenpeace won a High Court decision to allow climate change to be considered in new coal-fired power station proposals.

Last week at the Huntly coal fired power station we released a report showing how New Zealand could reach a 100 per cent renewable electricity supply by 2025 - the ball is in the government's court.

Watch video of the Greenpeace action at Huntly power station, one of New Zealand's biggest polluters: