Mystery Man Silences 500MW Turbine
On 10PM, Friday 28th of November, in full view of CCTV cameras, a lone man climbed two electrified, razor-wired security fences at one of the UK's major coal fired power plants, walked up to an unlocked door, and proceeded to shut down a 500MW turbine — apparently cutting off enough electricity from the grid to power a city of about half a million people. He then turned around and walked out, leaving only a home-made banner that read "no new coal". According to folks over at The Guardian (one of the few sources to report on the story), the power plant operators, the police, and the protest community are all desperate to know who the mystery man was, and how he did what he did. Here's more from The Guardian on the lone Kingsnorth protester:
Yesterday the hunt was on for the man dubbed "climate man" or the "green Banksy". Climate activists responsible for hijacking coal trains and breaking on to runways said they knew nothing about the incident. Even veterans of some of the most audacious direct actions, such as the scaling of the Kingsnorth chimney, are mystified. The station operator E.On professed astonishment that a lone activist would be daring enough to try to do something so potentially dangerous. Medway police said they had no suspects but were still investigating the incident, which took place on November 28.
"It was extremely odd indeed, quite creepy. We have never known anything like this at all, but it shows that if people want to do something badly enough they will find a way," said Emily Highmore, a spokeswoman for E.On.
The Kingsnorth powerplant has been hit by protests before, and has even had James Hansen backing up the Stop Kingsnorth protests. But taking it upon yourself to shut down a major power plant is pretty ballsy, some would say morally dubious and dangerous stuff. As with the Berkeley treetop protests, this will undoubtedly raise the debate on just how far we should go in our attempts to stop climate change.