Climate campaigners disrupt Shell AGM

DRILL OR DROP?

Disruption by climate campaigners today forced Shell to pause its first AGM since moving headquarters to London.

Protest outside Shell AGM, 24 May 2022. Photo: DrillOrDrop

The company asked for police help when about 80 demonstrators posing as shareholders accused it of human rights abuses, ecocide, fuel climate breakdown and funding misinformation.

After about 40 minutes, Shell chief executive, Ben van Beurden, and the board left the room to shouts from some in the audience of “Out, out, out”.

Earlier, a choir interrupted the chairman’s address with a revised version of Queen’s We Will Rock You, changing words to “we will stop you”.

Other protesters read testimonies of the impact of Shell’s activities in Africa. A banner was unveiled reading “Shell profits from hell on Earth”.

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Breaking: Brockham oil production plans approved.

DRILL OR DROP?

Plans to revive oil production at a small site in the Surrey greenbelt were approved this morning.

Opponents of Angus Energy’s oil production plans at Brockham, Surrey County Council offices in Reigate, 27 April 2022. Photo: DrillOrDrop

County Councillors voted by 8 to 2 in favour of the Angus Energy scheme for its site at Brockham near Dorking.

The company was granted planning permission to produce oil from the site’s BRX4 well until 2036. It was also allowed to reperforate the section of the well in the Portland sandstone formation. But the company will have to apply for further consents to carry out the work.

Council planners had recommended approval of Angus Energy’s application, saying there was a “demonstratable need” for the scheme to address the “ongoing demand for oil”. Angus Energy had argued that oil from Brockham would reduce UK imports.

The site, which has five other wells, has produced no oil for more than three years

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Spring Is Coming: Take to the Streets against the War

Avtonom. Translated by CrimethInc.

The Russian army has invaded Ukraine. Putin has lost his senses and his army is bombing cities, shooting civilians, and killing children. More than one million people have fled the country in order to escape from Putin’s “liberators.”

We refuse to submit to Russian military censorship. We say openly and clearly: this is war. This is a war of conquest and the Russian army is running it. With weapons in their hands, Ukrainians are successfully defending themselves from the invaders, but we, who are inside Russia, cannot stand aside from these events. We must show each other and the world that we are against this war, that only Putin and his gang need it. To be against the war is genuine anti-fascism right now.

March 6, this coming Sunday, is the general day of anti-war actions in Russia. Take the central square of your city! One of the meeting points in Moscow is the Square of the train stations at 15:00. There are also meetings at 19:00 and other times. Decide and organize for yourselves, team up with your friends. The main thing is to get out on the streets.

The Russian authorities are panicking now. They have realized that they are losing this war. That is why they hysterically threaten anti-war protesters—with expulsion, or with dismissal, or with immediate conscription into the army, or with jail. Don’t be afraid of them. Ukrainians in their cities go out into the streets with bare hands to protest against the invaders. They are standing against solders with rifles, against tanks. How can one be afraid of the rusty machinery of the Russian police?

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No new fossil fuel projects compatible with stable climate

Drill or drop.

Opponents of fossil fuel developments in southern England have described the government’s climate criteria for future oil and gas licences as “inherently flawed”.

IGas site at Misson, Nottinghamshire, 4 February 2019. Photo: Eric Walton

Ministers have proposed a climate compatibility checkpoint will decide whether new licences should be offered for exploration and production, both on and offshore. There are six tests that must be passed to avoid a pause in licensing.

Responding to a government consultation, the Weald Action Group said the checkpoint threatened UK net zero targets and global climate stability.

The group called for:

  • Immediate moratorium on onshore and offshore oil and gas projects that have been licenced but not approved.
  • Block on all future licensing rounds
  • Scrapping of the climate compatibility checkpoint

Weald Action Group said:

“We are in a climate emergency and no new fossil fuel projects are compatible with maintaining a stable climate. If we are to have any hope of keeping global average temperature rise below 1.50 c it is crucial that new oil and gas exploration is halted now. “

“The proposed oil and gas climate compatibility checkpoint is an inherently flawed premise that threatens the delivery not only of the UK’s net-zero target but, more importantly, of the global stability of the climate.”

The checklist creates doubt about the timing and speed of the UK’s move out of fossil fuels, the group said:

“This will create uncertainty for thousands of oil and gas workers who have a right to a just transition to sustainable and secure professions.”

Weald Action Group added:

“The UK bears a huge historic greenhouse gas emissions burden, is a developed country with a diversified economy much less dependent on oil and gas compared to other parts of the world, and has access to significant sources of clean renewable energy. As such, the UK must be one of the countries that goes first in ending new oil and gas exploration and production.”

The group said its arguments had been backed recently by:

Weald Action Group said the flaws in the checkpoint included:

Licensing It applies only to new oil and gas licensing rounds, ignoring the significant climate impact of already licensed but not approved projects.

Tests Some of the proposed potential tests risk “skewing the checkpoint in favour of allowing further licensing rounds”, the group said. It said carbon capture and storage, for example, must be used only as part of a transition out of fossil fuels. It should not be a means of extending oil and gas exploration and production.

Clarity There was also a “worrying lack of clarity” about how potential tests in the checklist would be weighted, the group said in its response. There was a risk, it said, that a proposed test which assesses the UK’s status as a net exporter or importer would have more influence than tests considering carbon emissions from the use of production oil or gas.

Weald Action Group also called for more political focus on managing energy demand, which it said was frequently bypassed in discussions about security of supplies.

Enforcement at Rathlin Energy oil site not “proportionate or sustainable” despite planning breach, says council

Drill Or Drop

Rathlin Energy breached planning permission at its West Newton-A site in East Yorkshire, a council official confirmed today.

But the official said it would not be “proportionate or sustainable” to insist Rathlin returned the site to farmland, as required by the permission.

A local residents’ group, which raised the issue with East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said today it was seeking legal advice.

Rathlin Energy’s West Newton-A site, November 2021. Photo: Used with the owner’s consent

DrillOrDrop reported last week that planning permission at West Newton-A, granted in 2018, lapsed on Friday 19 November 2021.

Our article said Rathlin Energy had not complied with a condition to remove all equipment, plug and abandon the wells and restore the site by the deadline.

Neither the company nor East Riding of Yorkshire Council responded to our questions.

But DrillOrDrop has seen correspondence, sent today by a council officer to a resident, confirming that Rathlin has not complied with the first condition of the planning permission requiring site clearance and restoration.

The official said:

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Red and Black Telly roundup.









Red and Black Telly roundup.







Government urged to withdraw from legal case in support of Surrey oil production — DRILL OR DROP?

DRILL OR DROP?

Photo: Weald Action Group

The UK government is being urged today to withdraw from a legal challenge about the climate impacts of oil production in Surrey. Horse Hill oil site in Surrey.

Campaigners have argued that the government cannot claim to be a world leader on tackling climate change while also backing fossil fuel extraction projects in the courts.

The newly-named Department of Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), is opposing a case brought by Surrey campaigner, Sarah Finch, to be heard at the appeal court next month (November 2021).

The case centres on the granting of planning permission by Surrey County Council for 20 years of gas production and expansion of the Horse Hill oil site.

The DLUHC confirmed this morning that the secretary of state, Michael Gove, has recused himself from involvement in the case because his constituency is near Horse Hill. But a spokesperson said the department remained an interested party.

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Red and Black Telly roundup.











Red and Black Telly roundup.