Video: Anti-nuclear campaigners begin Stop Hinkley protest in Bridgwater
Anti-nuclear campaigners from all over Britain began a weekend-long protest in Bridgwater yesterday, against the proposed construction nearby of the Hinkley C nuclear power station.
The main aim of Saturday's rally was to raise awareness within the community that, should the project get the go-ahead from the government, Hinkley Point will become a storage facility for tons of high-level radioactive spent fuel for over 100 years and the threat that might represent to Somerset and the UK at large.
The atmosphere was a peaceful and constructive one and the protesters who addressed the 120-strong group spoke in-depth on the subject and the perceived threat as they see it, of handing the well-being of our country to a multi-national company.
The protest coincides with the publication of power industry regulator Ofgem's first Electricity Capacity Assessment for the government, which warns of the risk of power shortages in 2015 for the country.
The protesters argue the country can meet its carbon reduction targets and keep the lights on, if the government were to commit the same level of resources to renewables rather than its proposed plan to build 10 new nuclear power stations by 2025.
They maintain this is a realistic aim, citing that Germany currently obtains 20% of its energy in this way and is working to achieve 80% from renewable sources by 2050 at the same time as phasing out nuclear.
As the rally wheeled symbolic barrels of nuclear waste through the centre of Bridgwater, there were some vocal objections from a number of local residents who welcome the proposed construction from EDF as a lifeline of much-needed investment in the town and a source of up to 25,000 jobs.
The protesters will be attempting to scale the fences surrounding the Hinkley C site on Monday morning to scatter 577 seed balls on the ground as a symbolic reference to the number of days that have elapsed since the Fukushima Daii-chi nuclear disaster, arrests are expected.
Green Party leader Natalie Bennett will be present at the mass trespass and will be addressing the protesters.
STOP HINKLEY PROTEST IN BRIDGWATER - PICTURE SPECIAL