Petition to ‘Save Radley Lakes’

Today we are not asking you to save the rainforest within 24 hours. Instead we are asking that you save a couple of ex-quarry pit lakes in Oxford for the locals. Npower wants to fill them with pulverised fuel ash from their Didcot coal fired power station nearby.

Npower really have been unreasonable on this and have even used court orders and security guards to stop local people visiting the lakes. It’s ‘big business’ way out of control.

To sign the petition;

More on the campaign;

Do it, or I’ll huff and I’ll puff and I’ll …. 🙂

This entry was posted in Biodiversity, Business, Community Projects, Energy, Humour, Nature & Conservation, Politics & Policy initiatives, Pollution, Protest, Rural communities, Waste, Water. Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to Petition to ‘Save Radley Lakes’

  1. earthpal says:

    Done. Although I was tempted not to … just so I could see you huff and puff. 😀

  2. matt says:

    I do that quite well. 🙂

  3. Dave On Fire says:

    The blatant disregard with which our lakes, rivers and wetlands are destroyed is quite sickening.

    Just out of interest, is the illustration some photoshoppery-pokery, or did this really get projected somewhere? Where, when?

  4. matt says:

    > The blatant disregard with which our lakes, rivers and wetlands are destroyed is quite sickening.

    Well I just puked with the ferocity of a force 10 typhoon. 🙂

    As to the lovely image above, I’d say its quietly photoshopped in someone’s back room. That way said protester avoids getting hit over the head by steroid pumped security guard.

  5. Pete Smith says:

    Bit of a quandary here. I notice that the campaign is calling for a boycott of npower. Does that include their ‘renewable’ Juice product? I imagine there’s probably quite a few customers who signed up to Juice back in the good old days when it was actively promoted by Greenpeace, and then sat back and forgot all about it, thinking they’d done their bit and everything was all right with the world. Is there any way to contact these people and let them know they’re buying electricity from a gang of lake trashers?
    And which is ‘better’? Buying standard electricity with its accompanying emissions, or buying low-carbon electricity from Juice/npower and killing lakes?
    Answers on a postcard …..

  6. matt says:

    gee wizz Pete that’s a tough call.

    In the meantime may I suggest a front theme for the postcard; a business hunger for dominating the world’s resources kind of theme.

  7. earthpal says:

    Pete, Green party Principal Speaker, Derek Wall, tells us not to believe all the hype surrounding the so-called green “Juice” from Npower and that users should rip up their Juice contracts.

    Trouble is, he doesn’t explain how/why this Juice is hyped up.

  8. Pete Smith says:

    I vaguely remember some scandal about npower continuing to claim power passed on to Juice customers against its Renewables Obligation requirement. So npower would be able to reduce the level of renewable electricity under its conventional tariffs by an equivalent amount and still meet the RO conditions. So there wouldn’t be any incentive to develop new renewable capacity.
    There’s no sign of the Juice deal on the Greenpeace web site, so it’s not possible to judge whether their falling out was due to the Radley Lakes thing.

  9. keithsc says:

    I have just signed the petition but also get my power from Juice. So who do people use instead?

  10. matt says:

    Keith! Is that you.

    Try ‘Good Energy’;


  11. keithsc says:

    Hi! Yes it’s really me. Back after a long time. Good-Energy looks really interesting. Meanwhile I’ll use my limited influence with NPower by writing to them on this issue.

  12. Pete Smith says:

    Welcome back Keith. Ecotricity is another possible supplier. Recommended by WWF and boasting the Co-op Bank and the Grauniad as customers, if you’re the kind of person who takes any notice of that sort of thing 🙂

  13. matt says:

    > Meanwhile I’ll use my limited influence with NPower by writing to them on this issue.

    I always knew you were a dare devil. Good luck.

    Let us know how it goes.

    PS. I’m assuming email will be your choice of communication. The response should hopefully be fairly quick. And probably pre-prepared & brief.

  14. Pete Smith says:

    Seem to remember reading somewhere (might have been on one of the ‘Save Jericho’ boards) that snail mail can be more effective than email and less likely to get an automated response.
    Are Radley Lakes worth the price of a stamp? 🙂 😦

  15. matt says:

    Dunno. Never been there.

  16. Stephan says:

    On the website it states – “PFA has many other uses. In these it is used either in the form produced at the power station or after processing to obtain suitable fractions. The different fractions have a range in density, heat-resistance, thermal insulation and composition, which is advantageous in specialised applications which include foundry work, ceramics, plastics, and as drying agents for sludge and similar materials. New uses for PFA are continually sought and, as improved industrial techniques are developed, further opportunities for PFA will be indentified”
    Are these commercially viable options considering the amount of PFA generated? The word “specialised” makes me wonder. Do we have a reasonable proposal of an economic alternative or is the argument against coal as an energy source, in which case including the above statement is a distraction. Otherwise, the likely outcome could be to exchange damaging these lakes – which are a manmade feature of the landscape, for damage to a natural – probably coastal – one.

  17. matt says:

    I once skied on a ex-gravel pit lake … located within the M25. Gravel pit lakes are everywhere, owing to localised production systems of yesteryear.

    Npower has already filled in 2 or 3 other gravel pits with Didcot waste at the disputed location. I think the locals simply don’t want to lose all of the lakes, which I think is a fair compromise, something npower refuses to recognise.

    The Coffee House has reported on positive and constructive waste utilization solutions before, coming from a US power utility. The solutions are there but they involve investment.

  18. Lakesaver says:

    The Light Projection was carried out by supporters of Save Radley Lakes who took a portable generator and a projection unit down the Sustrans Path for about 2 miles to get to a position where it could be beamed on to the power station cooling towers.

    It is not photoshopped. The image was taken with a digital camera on a tripod, at the time of the projection.

    There were once a dozen gravel pits in Radley, all but two have been filled with ash from Didcot Power Station, despite the fact that it could have been used for building materials. The Station Operators did not want to spend money investing in proper recycling plant, like Fiddlers Ferry Power Station has done, and the result is that only a small portion of their ash is suitable for recycling. The rest, rich in carbon because of the low burn temperature, is destined for landfill. The Rocktron Process recovers everything from the ash and streams it into component parts so that nothing is wasted, even the carbon has a use.

    NPower pay lip service to the environment, they tinker at the edges so they can say they have “green credentials” but in actual fact they operate the most polluting power station in Europe, Didcot A, and put out their spin on how good their restored areas of infilled gravel pits are. We have a beautiful diverse wildlife site at the Radley Lakes, no amount of “restoration” will bring back what will be destroyed. An open expanse of water with all the attendant wildlife will never live in 12 Hectares of Fuel Ash Slurry.

  19. matt says:

    Thank you for filling us in on those loose ends, so to speak. I’m now really impressed with the projection! You also answer the important question on why Didcot isn’t recycling their waste into building materials. It’s now clear that npower are playing the money game.

  20. Lakesaver says:

    Save Radley Lakes have been trying to persuade NPower to stop dumping but have failed so far but we are hoping that they might have a change of heart if loads of people switch from NPower or “Juice” (Greenpeace have dumped NPower!) and maybe try Ecotricity who will match what Npower are offering, I am told.

    We are looking for an entrepreneur who can buy all of Didcot’s ash and recycle it into “Flashbrix” which can then be used for the Olympic Building Programme in London.

    NPower won’t diversify – “We are in the business of generating electricity not selling ash” is what they said. Pity they can’t see further than the ends of their noses, because there is money to be made from spent fuel ash – that is why Fiddlers’ Ferry Power station have invested in the “Rocktron” Process – which incidentally NPower kicked into touch some years ago, when they took over from the CEGB – they were asked to invest and refused, so the joint venture folded. Now NPower’s ash from Aberthaw Power Station is polluting a quarry in Wales!

    RWE who own NPower is one big-time polluter – they owned Thames Water and got rid of it to a Consortium of Aussie Bankers, taking the profits from privatisation and leaving us with a legacy of leaking pipes. You can bet your bottom dollar they will do the same with Didcot A Power Station which is due to close in 2016 – leaving behind a legacy of ash slurry which will never be safe to walk on as it is just like quicksand!

  21. matt says:

    > We are looking for an entrepreneur who can buy all of Didcot’s ash and recycle it into “Flashbrix”

    Surely someone taking the ash off Npower’s hands will save the company the disposal costs, therefore at the very least the waste should be free of any charges. Npower obviously see no value in it.

    This may then encourage a business to transport the waste to a block maker, if the distance isn’t too far.

    Any idea where the nearest block making plant is in relation to Didcot?

  22. Pete Smith says:

    The Rocktron plant at the Fiddler’s Ferry power station is in Cheshire. As far as I can work out, this is the only such facility in the UK.

  23. matt says:


    Scottish and Southern Energy plc are a progressive company and competitive on price too. They provide my electricity and I’ve always been happy with their service.

    The RockTron venture looks very good when considering these quotes from your site link Pete;

    ‘….process all fresh ash produced and all ash currently stored in lagoons at the site over a period of up to 25 years.

    It is expected that the plant will be able to process up to 800,000 tonnes of ash per annum.

    By providing an alternative to the use of the limestone kilning process, it is estimated that the new plant will help to reduce carbon emissions by around 500,000 tonnes a year. ‘

    The fact that they intend to process ash from lagoon stores provides hope for Radley Lakes and others around the country that restoration may be possible. This could be sped up by the government providing financial carrot & stick incentives.

    Market demand for the end products has to be there of course and this should factor in export potential.

    It sounds as though the RockTron plant will be running at full capacity for now with the ash supplied from the Fiddler’s Ferry Power Station so, that leaves the Radley Lakes campaign’s idea of recycling Didcot’s ash hanging in the air. Npower appear not to be a progressive thinking company in this area of operations.

    With the government’s recent announcement to encourage the building of 3 million homes over the next decade or so it would appear Npower are not thinking of this market potential as far as building blocks are concerned. If I was a shareholder I would be asking serious questions of Npower management’s ability to think strategically and maximise the valueof the business. Maybe RWE are the problem.

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