The UK government’s negligence could create an uncertain future for the preservation of these historical artifacts.
As the country moves towards a carbon-neutral future, officials plan to shut down every coal plant in the UK by 2025.
Members of the £400m steam train industry have said they face an “uncertain future” and have asked for government help, as they fear the coal price rises that will be caused by the plant shutdown will put them out of business.
Conservative councillor Thomas Smith, who drives a steam train in Norfolk said: “Every railway enthusiast needs to write to their MP, and create a big stink.
“Britain is burning so little coal now it’s almost all gone from electric generation, time to tackle coal abroad and oil fuels at home…”
Ian Crowder, from Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway, told the BBC: “It’s all very well the government gives us reassurances but those reassurances needs to be in legislation.”
He said: “It’s the law of unintended consequences: no-one including government wants railways to be affected but if other coal use disappears that would be the effect. UK currently uses 12m tonnes coal pa – railways use just 26,000 tonnes pa”.
A Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy spokesman said: “Our policy of phasing out coal in our power system by 2025 will not restrict its use for heritage railways.
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