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Green MEP attacks Hinkley announcement

Molly Scott Cato, Green MEP for the South West Credit: PA: Lynne Cameron

The Green MEP for the South West has criticised the government announcement to guarantee £2 billion to underwrite the proposed nuclear electricity generation plant at Hinkley Point in Somerset, which is due to be built partly with Chinese money.

Molly Scott Cato, Green MEP for the South West, whose constituency Hinkley would be built in and long term critic of Hinkley says it is astonishing the government is "begging for Chinese money".

Wheeling out the Tory spin machine shows the government’s desperation. This is not new money at all. Numerous deadlines for signing this flawed deal have now been missed with French companies facing technological delays and Chinese companies facing financial difficulties.

It is astonishing that the government will go begging the Chinese for money in the middle of a stock market crisis while neglecting our incredible renewable resources in the South West. The Navitus off-shore wind development in Dorset alone would have secured enough energy to power 700,000 homes. There is clearly an ideological pro nuclear, anti-renewables obsession at the heart of government. While this government sees fit to subsidise foreign companies to support an old industry it is deliberately destroying UK companies and undermining investment opportunities for small-scale investors building the energy of the future.

The Tories are snubbing British citizens who have shown their willingness to invest in community renewables and support the clean, green energy of the future with which our country, and particularly the South West, is so richly endowed.

– Molly Scott Cato, Green MEP for the South West

New green energy projects could be set up in region

New green energy projects could be set up in region Credit: ITV News West Country

There could be two new green energy projects set up off the North coast of Devon and Cornwall. The Crown Estate, which manages the UK seabed, has given approval for leases on two sites - one for a wave energy scheme off North Cornwall ,the other a tidal based project off North Devon.

A wave hub is currently in place off St Ives.


Campaigners to clean up west country beaches

This weekend hundreds of volunteers are expected to scour the region's coastline looking for litter and other debris washed up on the shore. It's part of a campaign by the pressure group Surfers Against Sewage.

It warns that, although our beaches look clean at first glance, they can be strewn with plastic and other debris that threaten marine habitats.

  1. Duncan Sleightholme

Marine Conservation Zones Petition Handed to Government

Environmental groups from the West Country have criticised the government over plans to limit the number of areas where marine life is protected. Today a framed copy of a petition with quarter of a million signatures was handed in to Parliament by wildlife groups from across the country.

It asks Ministers to create more marine conservation areas around our coasts. Only a quarter of those proposed will be recognised this year. Environment Minister Richard Benyon says more zones may be added later, and that the government is starting with those areas that have the strongest case.

Hundreds expected to help rid Westcountry beaches of litter

Hundreds of volunteer litter-pickers will be helping to clean up the region's beaches this weekend. It's an event organised by the Marine Conservation Society. More than 100 countries and regions worldwide are taking part.

The data collected will help keep up pressure on governments to act to reduce the amount of rubbish on beaches.

Hundreds expected to help clear litter from Westcountry beaches Credit: ITV Westcountry

'Hot Rocks' project hopes to tap into energy underground

A scheme to tap into the energy beneath our feet is being looked at by a new working party in Parliament. The 'hot rocks' project has been set up to promote ways of extracting natural heat from Cornwall's granite.

But a company, which has won planning permission for two test bore holes next to the Eden project, is struggling to raise the money. Our political correspondent Bob Constantine reports.


Sharks tracked from Exeter

A group of sharks are being tracked by scientists at the University of Exeter

Scientists at the University of Exeter are tracking a group of sharks off the west coast of Scotland to learn more about their behaviour.

20 basking sharks have been tagged by researchers from Scottish Natural Heritage (SNH) and the university.

To track the basking sharks online go to

Decision expected on badger culling trials

A decision will made today at the Royal Courts of Justice on two proposed badger culling trials in Somerset and Gloucestershire.

Badger culling trials are due to start later this year Credit: ITV West Country

The Badger Trust challenged DEFRA on the trials which are due to start later this summer. The culls are being proposed as a method of stopping the spread of TB.

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