By Joe Thorne
An important struggle is brewing on the Isle of Wight: we all need to take note, both of what has happened so far (and the lessons we can learn from it); and the possibilities in the coming weeks.
A factory, the only remaining manufacturer of wind-farm turbines in the UK, is due to be closed by its owners, Vestas, who are making all 500 workers redundant. The company, like so many of those making redundancies at the moment, is using the recession as cover for cuts which are motivated by nothing other than ordinary cost cutting. Jobs are being moved to the USA.
But this is not only about jobs. News of the planned closure has also ignited outrage in the movement against climate change. When we should be converting to an economy based on renewable, low-carbon energy, the closure of the Vestas factory is just what doesn’t need to happen. So Vestas is not just a class fight – though it is that. It is a class fight which raises issues of climate change, and the tension between capitalist production, and social production.
Workers are now discussing occupying one of the two sites on the Isle of Wight, and need the support of workers and climate change campaigners everywhere. Continue reading “vestas – the struggle on the horizon”