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Last Updated: Monday, 20 November 2006, 15:49 GMT
Pipe protest enters second week
Pipe protest
Protesters say they will stay to Christmas if necessary
Protesters occupying part of a gas pipeline being built across Wales say they will continue their action up until Christmas if necessary.

The sit-in at Trebanos in the Swansea Valley is against the construction of a 200-mile (322km) gas pipe being built from Pembrokeshire to Gloucestershire.

The protest has now entered its second week and shows no sign of ending.

Pipeline contractors National Grid said the project is vital to securing the UK's future gas supplies.

The pipeline is being built to transport imported gas supplies arriving at Milford Haven as Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).

The activists occupying the construction site in Trebanos have claimed they have established squatters' rights by camping inside the pipes being laid, and that it would take a court possession order to remove them.

Opponents fear the pipeline is unsafe and damages the countryside it passes through.

Protester Nick said: "We're there for environmental issues, but we're also there because of the danger of this pipeline.

Pipeline
The pipeline's route runs from Milford through the Brecon Beacons

"The fact that they want to blow up areas of mountains to put the pipe down. The mountains been mined for years so it's basically like Swiss cheese.

"Down the pipeline the conditions aren't great, but they know how effective they're being at the moment and how the protest has now gone national."

Members of the local community have shown their support for the activists by taking food and clothing to their camp on the site.

David Mercer from National Grid said the company was prepared to listen, but added that the pipeline would still go ahead.

"There was a very detailed routing evaluation, environmental statement prepared for this pipeline and the pipeline received ministerial consent on this route last year, so we have gone through an exhaustive process.

"It's not easy routing a pipeline and we firmly believe this is the best place for us to be."


SEE ALSO
In pictures: Gas pipeline protest
14 Nov 06 |  In Pictures
Pipe protesters 'attract support'
14 Nov 06 |  South West Wales
Assembly plea to call in gas pipe
10 May 06 |  South West Wales

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