Keep the Coal in the Hole Summer Festival

In a few weeks a few Green MPs and I are off to Southland for the Keep the Coal in the Hole Summer Festival.

The website says:

‘The Summer Festival will bring together people from Southland and across Aotearoa who are concerned about climate justice to raise their voices, listen, collaborate, strategise and participate in non violent direct action. We need community action to avert dangerous climate change and leave a thriving planet and society for future generations.’

The main target is lignite coal mining in Southland an issue the Greens have been strong in opposing. Lignite is bad for the environment and our economy instead we should be pursuing modern renewable energy solutions, not 19th Century coal.

Sounds good, will you be going?

7 Comments Posted

  1. Call it anything you like, just keep it in the ground.

    The overall effect of the current level of CO2 is best found looking at the Pliocene, some 3 million years ago, as the CO2 levels we are reaching for were last reached then. There were no milankovitch cycles at that point. Maintaining 350-360 would ensure there would not be any further such episodes… oops, we overshot… turn it down…

    Oh wait, we can’t.

  2. Keep the coal in the ground and call it a strategic reserve in the world’s fight to delay a coming ice age.

    There is a prediction that the next ice age is due in about 1500 years but that the current levels of carbon in the atmosphere would delay it. It’s a nice idea this, that depletion of scarce carbon resources might help us to prevent an even more destructive climate change. But if we run through our finite carbon resources at our current rate we will then face a falling off of carbon levels in the atmosphere and be unable to delay this very event. As we are already well over the level of carbon in the atmosphere required to delay an ice age, it would make even more sense to cut back our use and prolong this finite resource for as long as possible

    After all what would delay an ice age longest is a sustainable greenhouse effect.


    Dr Skinner’s group – which also included scientists from University College London, the University of Florida and Norway’s Bergen University – calculates that the atmospheric concentration of CO2 would have to fall below about 240 parts per million (ppm) before the glaciation could begin.

    The current level is around 390ppm, and other research groups have shown that even if emissions were shut off instantly, concentrations would remain elevated for at least 1,000 years, with enough heat stored in the oceans potentially to cause significant melting of polar ice and sea level rise.

  3. I’ll be there!
    (Hope I’m not the only insect pitching my tent at Mataura! – come on all you diptera, come south! It’s a great part of the world and the place to bee this summer.)

  4. Yes, I am!
    The weather in Southland has been remarkable, all summer – blue skies, hot as you’d want and calm – perfect for campers, not so great for dairy farmers who are already stressing about feeding cows – the place is dry, which kinda indicates there won’t be a ‘burning man’ aspect to the ‘coal camp’ (hopefully!). Our ‘driftwood artist’ Wayne Hill is erecting several of his works on site and there are, as I understand, other creative ‘things’ in the wind.

Comments are closed.