UK activists acquitted after coal protest

Six Greenpeace activists have been cleared of causing criminal damage to Kingsnorth power station, a coal-fired plant in southeast England. The protestors successfully argued that they were trying to prevent greater harm caused by climate change to property around the world.

The case is significant because it marks the first time climate change has been successfully used as "lawful excuse" for property damage. Similar arguments are expected to be used by environmental activists in future.

Many climate-change scientists testified at the trial, including top NASA scientist James Hansen.

Speaking at the trial, Hansen said the 20,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emitted daily by Kingsnorth is equal to the least 30 polluting countries in the world combined, and could be responsible for the extinction of up to 400 species.


See full story