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Shell to Sea protesters scale government building to reach Minister's Office

Shell to Sea protesters scale government building to reach Minister's Office
mayo | environment | feature Saturday December 22, 2007 19:46 by Shell to Sea dublinshelltosea at gmail dot com 00353871323369
Eamon Ryan absent- doing a nixer for Shell or getting orders from the offshore operators group?

A small group of Shell to Sea activists scaled the heights of the Department of Natural Resources today, to place a banner reading PROTECT IRISH NATURAL RESOURCES on the balcony outside Eamon Ryan's office. Splitting into two small teams, the protesters used advice from GreenPeace to distract the security and gain access to the Minister's top floor office and leave a message for him.
Related Link: Prominent Shell to Sea activist to oversee Corrib project
This action was carried out to bring to public attention the government's support for every aspect of the Rossport pipeline/refinery scheme, and the giveaway of Irish Natural resources to multinational companies like Shell, with no lasting benefit for people in Ireland. The Green party have now had a full term of the Dáil to honour their election promises, but sadly, their end of term report is is marked FAIL. None of the gas or oil in the wells off the western coast of Ireland will belong to the state, since the government still plans to give it all away for free to private companies. The recent changes to licensing agreements won't apply to the eight billion euro Corrib project, and don't amount to a serious stake for the people of Ireland in their own natural resources, 100 per cent of which is still being given away to companies like Shell and Statoil. None of the money from these fossil fuels will be invested in renewable sources of energy like wind and wave power, and no thought has been given to the impact that the exploitation of these resources will have on climate change. Áine, one of the Shell to Sea protestors, said "The government's supine support for the oil companies shows that they prioritise the welfare of Shell shareholders over the wellbeing of their own citizens. Shell are being allowed to keep all the gas and sell it to the highest bidder, almost certainly in Britain. The refining of 4 million euro worth of raw gas per day will clearly degrade the environment, both locally for the people of Mayo, and also in terms of carbon dioxide emissions when the gas is used. From an Irish point of view, we would be better off leaving the gas where it is, under the sea." Shell to Sea protestors have also pointed out that the government's double talk on climate change can be clearly seen when they are supporting the construction of a raw gas refinery, and say they are hoping for further exploitation of fossil fuels in the Atlantic margin. ÁÍne continued: "Until supply-side solutions are put in place, the continuing exploitation of fossil fuels will be adding to carbon dioxide emissions which is causing climate change. Any possible benefit from this is lost because the gas and oil are simply handed over to the big corporations. The people of Ireland will see no advantage, either environmental or financial, from their own gas and oil resources." "Meanwhile the corporations which will see huge profits from Irish resources, seek to use the cheapest and most dangerous way of exploiting them. Our government is happy to see lives of people in Ireland put at risk by the use of an onshore pipeline and refinery in Mayo, simply to maximise returns for Shell shareholders. "

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Posted Date: 
2 January 2008 - 1:22pm