In March, the former Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government Sajid Javid gave what is hoped will be the final rejection of the intended surface mine at Druridge Bay, Northumberland.
The purpose of the mine was to obtain millions of tonnes of coals, with a much smaller amount of building materials.
Who the final decision-maker is is not always clear in these days of European and Supreme courts, but I trust the many well-informed objectors to this blot on the landscape business will feel rewarded for their efforts.
A fair argument has been that this local coal would only replace imported coal from such places as Poland and Russia.
The phasing out of coal-fired power stations is well advanced, with only a few units being held available for emergency situations as more environmental means of generating electricity advance – hopefully.
Wood pellets, largely imported, are not an environmental fuel in the overall policy of removing carbon dioxide and even worse gases from what we burn and breathe.
In North Yorkshire, Lancashire, Surrey, etc, people have demonstrated in front of sites where the objectionable ‘fracking’ and conventional drilling for gas and oil have had initial plan approval by councils.
Some industrial processes may depend on oil, gas or coal, but instead of the present millions of tonnes, a few hundred should be tolerated until something better arises. The potential jobs have been also considered.
The objectors include some high profile television and film people who have made valuable contributions, but the ranks of ordinary people are the main force.
Mr A M Johnson