Today in the High Court of Justice, EDF Energy failed to win an injunction against a number of anti-nuclear power campaigns. The energy giant is seeking permission to build a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point in Somerset but is facing major opposition at a local and national level. In a clear attempt to suppress opposition to its highly controversial plans, EDF has not only sought the eviction of individual protestors occupying farm land near to the proposed site, but also attempted to secure an injunction against four anti-nuclear groups: South West Against Nuclear, Stop Nuclear Power Network UK, Stop Hinkley and Stop New Nuclear to prevent them protesting on the land in future.
Mr Justice Floyd granted a possession order against the defendants camping on the land, but refused to grant the injunction application against the four anti-nuclear groups describing it as ‘inappropriate’. Stop New Nuclear, the campaigning network which includes CND, welcomed the judge’s verdict.
Kate Hudson, General Secretary of CND, representing Stop New Nuclear at the court, said:
‘We regret that the protestors will be evicted and admire their principled stance, but we are delighted that Mr Justice Floyd has upheld the right of freedom of speech and protest. As governments around the world are rejecting nuclear power it would be scandalous if British people were deprived of the right to speak out and campaign against nuclear power and to change government policy. Today that right has been upheld. We invite all concerned citizens to join us at Hinkley Point on Saturday March 10th – to surround the site using public footpaths and rights of way – in a totally peaceful and legal protest against a dirty, dangerous, expensive and totally unnecessary form of energy.’