Seven people stand facing the camera holding placards.

Rees-Mogg targeted by new campaign group

Environmental campaigners took action against local MP Jacob Rees-Mogg to call out his support of raw sewage being dumped in British waterways. 

It was the first action of newly launched group Mogg Watch, part of the national MP Watch campaign, which works to encourage MPs towards urgent action on the climate crisis. 

Vicki Youdan, 43 from Keynsham, spokesperson for Mogg Watch, said: ‘Rees-Mogg voting for sewage dumping is part of a much larger record of failing voters on nature and climate change issues. 

In North East Somerset we care about our own health and the health of our communities, nature and children’s futures. We deserve an MP who will protect what we love, not pollute it.’

Read more: Keynsham protests Rees-Mogg oil comments

Nine campaigners gathered outside the constituency surgery of the North East Somerset MP on Friday, December 9. One of them wore a Big Head mask of Rees-Mogg. 

During the action, the group installed a commemorative blue plaque on the surgery building which read “Jacob Rees-Mogg voted to dump raw sewage into local rivers 20.10.21”

It was attached with a sticky backing chosen to prevent damage to the building, according to Mogg Watch. 

The group have launched a crowdfunder to support their upcoming work to raise the profile of Rees-Mogg’s voting record on climate change issues. They point to his history of climate denial and issuing of new gas and oil licences whilst acting as energy secretary. 

In 2021, Rees-Mogg voted down an amendment in the House of Commons to stop private water companies dumping raw sewage into the UK’s rivers and coastline. 

Over the last two years, Wessex Water has discharged sewage into rivers and lakes in Bath and North-East Somerset 52,488 times, which has been blamed for people falling ill after coming into contact with river water in nearby Bath. 

Wessex Water is planning to increase people’s water bills by £5 a month, which Mogg Watch say is making consumers pay the price for their polluting behaviour. Meanwhile, top executives have taken home £3.7 million in bonuses, benefits and incentives over the last two years.

In June, climate groups led by XR protested in Keynsham against remarks made by Rees-Mogg supporting the extraction of ‘every last drop’ of oil from the North Sea. 

That protest was attended by West of England metro mayor Dan Norris, who voiced his support for the protesters and highlighted the urgent need for climate action.

Feature image: Mogg Watch.

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