Wantage locals Bradley Day and Rebecca Quinn held the attention of Cornmarket Street in Oxford, posing in a piece of performance theatre as coal industry representatives Jack and Jill. They drew attention to the flaws in proposed “clean coal” technology, a proposal that through using coal in ways that supposedly avoid carbon dioxide being released into the atmosphere, we can continue to burn coal. Such technologies are as yet nowhere near being developed, however, and the science behind the proposals does not guarantee effective carbon cuts.
Sending up this proposal, Jack and Jill demonstrated a method of their own which consisted of nothing more than scrubbing coal with soap and water. Aided by scrubbing brushes and rubber gloves they became very dirty themselves, eventually covered head to toe in coal stains. After demonstrating this ludicrous technique to passers-by they went to proudly proclaim to the high street, coated in dirt, that “the coal industry is as clean as we are!”
“Behind the silliness of this action a very serious point was being made: there is no such thing as ‘Clean Coal’,” says activist Bradley Day, “because coal will always remain the very worst of all fossil fuels. After spending years causing climate change while also denying it existed, the coal industry is now bizarrely posing itself as the solution to climate change through the notion of ‘clean coal’. This is nothing more than an act of propaganda to extend the life of an industry that can have no future in a low-carbon society”.
“Clean Coal is nothing more than a token gesture on the part of an industry that has vested economic interest in sustaining coal use,” says campaigner Rebecca Quinn, “It avoids looking towards genuinely clean and sustainable energy production methods such as wind and wave power, technologies that are currently developed and functional. Industries refusing to take responsibility for their enormous contribution to Climate Change and proposing inadequate solutions like this is taking advantage of people who really care about progress and are making real changes in their lives.”
The recent extreme flooding, the worst for sixty years, has demonstrated that climate change is very much happening and it is not something that only affects other people. It is not too late to avoid the very worst impacts of climate change, but in order to do so we must cut our UK emissions by 90%. This is no small challenge so radical and real steps need to be taken, rather than ‘quick fix’ solutions. Such ‘solutions’ promoted by the fossil fuel industries either don’t work or haven’t even been invented yet.
CHECK OUT THE STORY OF A DAY IN THE LIFE OF JACK AND JILL COMPLETE WITH PHOTOS AT http://curioustheatrecollective.blogspot.com