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7 Jan 2015

Arthur Neslen, The Guardian (UK)

Poland: Farmers threaten uprising over mine due to forced relocation & pollution concerns

"Polish farmers threaten uprising over opencast coalmine", 31 Dec 2014

Farmers in western Poland are warning of civil unrest if a vast coalmine and power plant are given the go-ahead, with thousands of people at risk of being forcibly relocated...At risk are the food exports for which the...region is known...and a windfarm which...would have to be demolished...Experts say that 22 villages could be destroyed by the opencast mine proposed by...energy company PAK...Many farmers in the area have ties to the land stretching back several generations, and say they will not leave without a fight...18 local companies are also supporting [the campaign], fearing crop production shortfalls, rising air pollution levels, and a drastic depletion of local water tables...Heinz...has been at the forefront of the corporate objectors...Trade unions are also backing the campaign...A pro-renewable energy sentiment is widely-shared among local people...Opinion polls say that 70% of local people are against the mine...