Friday, November 11, 2011

Compare and contrast

Back in 2007, we learned that Solid Energy had been hiring private investigators to spy on environmental groups. After a brief public scandal and a clear instruction from the government not to do it again, everyone forgot about it and the spying continued. No-one was held to account, and nothing changed.

Compare this with a similar case in France. In 2006, state-owned energy firm EDF was facing a series of protests from Greenpeace over their plans to build more nuclear reactors. So they hired private investigators to spy on them. As a result, the spies have been jailed, and EDF has been fined €1.5 million and ordered to pay another €500,000 in damages. I guess they just take their democracy more seriously over there...