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Christian group protests West Cumbria coal mine on Ash Wednesday

On Ash Wednesday, Christian Climate Action, a Christian group working to prevent climate breakdown, held protests against West Cumbria Mining Limited, and urged companies associated with the mining group to sever ties with them over a proposed coal mine in Cumbria. The protesters displayed banners that contained the writing ‘Coal is killing humanity’ and also wrote letters to companies such as Ward Hadaway and Javelin Global Commodities to discontinue working with West Cumbria Mining. In London, a service of lament was held by Rev. Helen Burnett and Rev. Vanessa Elston outside the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, to appeal for the overturning of the mine proposal.

Independent Catholic News reports:

On Ash Wednesday, Christians protested outside the Leeds, Manchester and Newcastle offices of Ward Hadaway, lawyers for West Cumbria Mining Limited, and the London headquarters of Javelin Global Commodities, which has an exclusive marketing and offtake agreement with West Cumbria Mining. They called on both companies to “cut the ties” with the proposed new coal mine in Cumbria.

The protesters held banners with the message ‘Coal is killing humanity’ and delivered letters asking the organisations to end their involvement with West Cumbria Mining. The Christians took part in the actions as part of a group called Christian Climate Action.

In London, Rev Vanessa Elston and Rev Helen Burnett also held a service of lament outside the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities, calling for the planning permission for the mine to be overturned. During the service, crosses were marked on people’s foreheads, using both traditional ashes and coal dust. Columban Education Worker James Trewby and Columban Sister Kate Midgley joined the Christian Climate Action witness at Westminster. James said: “I joined today to lament our government’s plans to open a new coal mine at the same time as talking about climate leadership. Columban Missionaries around the world accompany people at the front line of the climate crisis. We must do better for them.”

Rev Vanessa Elston said: “Granting permission for the West Cumbria coal mine when the world needs to be reducing carbon emissions at speed, is a failure of leadership. How can we have any credibility on the world stage, in trying to get China and the US to take action on the climate crisis, if we are building a new coal mine. Christians need to speak out against decisions like this.”

Read the full article here.

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