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What the Gas Price hike means – the Tales of Two Cities

What the Gas Price hike means – the Tales of Two Cities

Hot on the heels of the Petrol Panic comes the Gas Price Panic and the Electricity Price Panic – my head spins as I try to take in each of these fossil fuel driven convulsions. It is worth the effort to unpick this ball of yarn and lay out the tale it reveals. It is...
Petrol Panic II – taking on the barriers to climate action

Petrol Panic II – taking on the barriers to climate action

Week two of the Petrol Panic – Monday 4th October. It looks like the pumps are working as normal in the BP petrol station at 232 Priory Road in Anfield, Liverpool, fed by road tankers filled at the gantries of Stanlow Refinery, 12 miles to south on the banks of the Mersey. But the Petrol...
Profiting from the Panic – how to use a squeeze in the oil flow to financial advantage

Profiting from the Panic – how to use a squeeze in the oil flow to financial advantage

Petrol Panic grips the nation. A second week of fuel shortages on the forecourts threatens to hobble the economy, or at least erode support for the Tories in their heartlands and overshadow the Conservative Party Conference. Will queues at the petrol pumps in Manchester crowd the prime minister’s show? The Shell stations in Bolton were...
Government issues nearly £2 bn for fossil fuels abroad... and 0.0005 as much for renewables

Government issues nearly £2 bn for fossil fuels abroad… and 0.0005 as much for renewables

New data shows: last year the UK government supported oil, gas and coal projects in other countries to a tune of £1.8 billion – through UK Export Finance (UKEF), a government department that purports to support UK businesses operating elsewhere. We’ve analysed UKEF’s annual list of loans and financial guarantees, and here’s some of the...
Hopes and fears in the climate of change....

Hopes and fears in the climate of change….

  I have been involved in various climate campaigns and research projects for the last 10 years and have often found myself in rooms full of well meaning, reasonably wealthy, middle aged white people. They are usually the Heads of Sustainability or Corporate Responsibility in their places of work – banks, local authorities, consultancies, funding...
Silence in the Storm – Business and No Deal Brexit

Silence in the Storm – Business and No Deal Brexit

  The storm in Westminster rages so ferociously that at times it’s hard to hear ourselves think. There is second by second coverage of the House of Commons and Downing Street from every conceivable angle. Backbenchers so obscure that we’ve never heard of them before are dragged through the TV studios and closely cross-questioned. Others...
Of Climate and Memory – Extinction Rebellion and Doreen Massey

Of Climate and Memory – Extinction Rebellion and Doreen Massey

We drive slowly down the winding lane that leads across the flat landscape on the northern flank of the Solway Firth in the county of Dumfries & Galloway. As we move onto the farmland of Preston Merse, we are distracted by the red stone ruin of Wreaths Tower. All that remains of the craggy weathered...
‘The Knowledge Quarter’ – resistance to capture and divestment from capital

‘The Knowledge Quarter’ – resistance to capture and divestment from capital

In the Autumn I attended an utterly inspiring Shake! & Stuart Hall Foundation event – the launch of the Black Cultural Activism Map. It was held at the Platform theatre space in the Central Saint Martin’s art school – CSM – part of University of the Arts London. This new premises is a vast warehouse of...
UK government spends aid money on promoting fracking

UK government spends aid money on promoting fracking

News just in: the UK is spending its official development aid funds to promote fracking abroad. The Foreign Office financed two projects in China to “export UK expertise in shale gas development”, aiming to create “an improved business environment” for UK companies. Our research, released today in collaboration with Friends of the Earth and Christian...
The slow dismantling the house of oil - The Gulbenkian Foundation divests

The slow dismantling the house of oil – The Gulbenkian Foundation divests

Quite unexpected comes remarkable news! Lucy Neal, a long-term part of the Platform family, e-mails out of the blue, forwarding an article from the Algarve Daily News, published on 1st February in southern Portugal. The headline reads: ‘Gulbenkian Foundation gets out of the oil business’ That truly is unexpected. Lucy had not foreseen this coming...
La Zad puts down roots – sensing the future

La Zad puts down roots – sensing the future

We’re in the middle of the crowd. Standing some way back from the stage, watching transfixed and elated at the performance of Orchestre Tout Puissant Marcel Duchamp. Two trombones, two drummers, two marimbas, two electric guitars, two cellos and five other musicians blast out such a blissful riot of sound that our souls sail above...
Revealed: UK council pensions are banking £16.1 billion on climate disaster

Revealed: UK council pensions are banking £16.1 billion on climate disaster

Today we’re releasing new data analysis showing that UK councils invest £16.1 billion in fossil fuel corporations through their workers’ pensions. These investments are bankrolling the companies most responsible for climate change, like Shell and BP. The councils with the biggest investments in fossil fuels – Manchester, Galloway & Dumfries, Hammersmith & Fulham, and Torfaen...