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Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Greenpeace News

Russia to Release Greenpeace Arctic Sunrise

Arctic Sunrise (Photo: Jeremy Sutton-Hibbert / Greenpeace)

Russia’s investigative committee (IC) this morning informed Greenpeace International that it has annulled the arrest of the ship Arctic Sunrise, which has remained in custody in Murmansk since performing a protest against Arctic oil drilling September 19, 2013. According to Greenpeace, the investigative committee recently extended its investigation into the protest at the Prirazlomnaya platform by two months, until July 24. However, lawyers acting for Greenpeace International were informed of the ship’s release during a meeting in the port city of Murmansk this morning.

Lego Drops Shell Contract, Criticizes Greenpeace

Denmark's Lego has said it would not renew a branding contract with oil major Royal Dutch Shell in the wake of comments from environmental lobby Greenpeace saying the toymaker had fallen in with "bad company". But in a statement issued late on Wednesday, Lego criticized Greenpeace's actions and did not give a concrete reason for not renewing the contract. "The Greenpeace campaign uses the Lego brand to target Shell," Lego said in a statement entitled 'Comment on Greenpeace campaign and the Lego brand'. "As we have stated before, we firmly believe Greenpeace ought to have a direct conversation with Shell. Unlisted Lego issues Shell-branded bricks and box sets including petrol stations, drilling ships and the Formula One cars that Shell sponsors.

Greenpeace Charged with Unlawfully Boarding Vessel

The U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Florida issued a Press Release

Greenpeace Stops Ship In France

Greenpeace activists prevented a ship from unloading U.S. genetically modified soybeans on Monday, but allowed a batch of traditional soybeans to be brought ashore, Reuters reported. The freighter Polidefkis P. arrived at this southwestern port city early in the day carrying a 22,000-ton cargo of oilseeds from New Orleans. Militants from the Greenpeace environmentalist group at first tried to stop the boat from docking but later relented amid fears the Greek-registered ship might run aground at low tide. Around 40 activists then prevented the unloading of the cargo by taking over two port cranes. They only let some of the oilseeds off after being told they did not contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs).

Arctic Protest Ship Arrested, Due Murmansk

Arctic Sunrise approaching Murmansk: Photo credit Greenpeace

Greenpeace's “Arctic Sunrise” is nearing the Russian port on tow from the Pechora Sea, accompanied by a Russian Coast Guard vessel (with the protest crew locked up on board) after an attempt to board the Gazprom drilling rig Prirazlomnaya. The Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise is close to arriving in the port of Murmansk after being boarded by Russian authorities last week following a peaceful protest against Arctic oil drilling. The ship has arrived under tow in the fjord near Murmansk  accompanied by a tug boat and the Russian Coast Guard vessel Ladoga…

Greenpeace Arctic Drilling Protest: 8 More Coralled

Iain Rogers

A further eight Greenpeace International activists have been detained for two months in Russia pending an investigation into possible charges of piracy. The eight will join 22 others, including a freelance videographer and freelance photographer, detained on Thursday following a peaceful protest against Arctic oil drilling. Greenpeace International pledged to appeal all 30 detentions. The 30 have already been held by the Russian authorities for 10 days since the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise was illegally boarded (in the view of Greenpeace) in international waters on Thursday, September 19.

Netherlands Pushes for Release of Arctic Greenpeace Protestors

The Dutch government has lodged a rare application at the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), asking it to order the immediate release of the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise and all those who were aboard for the peaceful protest against Gazprom’s Arctic oil platform, the Prirazlomnaya. If ITLOS rules in favor of the Netherlands, the 28 Greenpeace International activists, freelance photographer Denis Sinyakov and freelance videographer Kieron Bryan could go home while they await confirmation of a Russian court date. The Dutch authorities initiated an arbitration case against Russia on October 4, and are calling for ITLOS to indicate ‘provisional measures’ pending the outcome of that arbitration.

Rough Seas Sends Greenpeace Home

Greenpeace activists repelled from Seattle-bound oil rig. Pic provided by Greenpeace

Six Greenpeace activists opposed to offshore drilling in the Arctic have abandoned a Seattle-bound drill rig they boarded in the Pacific Ocean six days ago. Rough seas prompted the decision, Greenpeace said. The protesters rappelled off the an oil rig leased by Royal Dutch Shell Plc. that is bound for the Arctic and got into inflatable boats before returning to a Greenpeace ship stationed nearby. "Worsening weather conditions that were expected to bring high swells led the six activists to leave the oil rig on Saturday," a Greenpeace representative said in an email.

Greenpeace Russia Vessel Detention: Dutch Government Bond Ready

Outside Russian detention building: Photo credit Greenpeace

The Dutch Foreign Ministry has finalised a bank guarantee of 3.6 million euros in compliance with a binding ruling by the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) ordering Russia to release the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise and the Arctic 30 protesters. "The Netherlands has now fulfilled its part of the Tribunal's binding order and Russia is obligated to also comply by releasing the ship and the Arctic 30, as the Tribunal so ordered. The Tribunal has ordered both Russia and the Netherlands to report back on progress with their compliance by December 2.

Norway Coast Guard Blames Greenpeace For Collision

Norway’s coastguard reportedly accused Greenpeace of causing a collision at sea in which an environmentalist was seriously injured during an anti-whaling protest. The coastguard said that Greenpeace’s inflatable dinghy obstructed legal whaling in Norwegian waters on Saturday and was hit by a coastguard vessel when it tried to escape arrest.

Greenpeace Blames EU For Unregulated Fishing

Greenpeace accused the European Union of blocking international efforts to stop illegal and unregulated fishing boats from depleting world fish stocks. The environmental organization said the EU, along with Mexico and Brazil, were trying to weaken a U.N. pact on illegal fishing due to be agreed at a meeting in Rome later this week. The U.N. Vessels registered in countries such as Belize, Honduras and Panama, which are not party to regional fishing treaties, are not bound by rules such as fish quotas or regulations on types of nets that can be used. "They are ruthlessly exploiting already depleted fish populations and robbing legitimate fishermen of millions of honestly earned dollars," Greenpeace said.

Campaign Launched Against Indian Shipbreaking Yard

The International Transport Workers Federation (ITF) and environmental group Greenpeace launched a joint campaign last week against the world's largest shipbreaking yard, located in India. Officials of the ITF and Greenpeace said they would present to the International Maritime Organization (IMO), details of the environmental hazards at the Alang shipyard in India's western state of Gujarat. "We are demanding that shipowners and nations take full responsibility for their contaminated cargo," Nityanand Jairaman, Greenpeace's coordinator for South Asia, said. Shipbreaking poses large environmental risks because of the toxic waste remaining in ships, he said.

Arctic Drilling Protest: Russian Coast Guards Hold Crew

Photo credit Greenpeace Arctic

Greenpeace in a 'Tweet' report their ship, 'Arctic Sunrise', boarded in the Pechora Sea by the Russian Coast Guard, and the 25 crew arrested and locked in a room, following a protest against Gazprom's Arctic drilling operations. The Greenpeace website carried information that by means of a helicopter and ropes, armed Coast Guard officials boarded the vessel and started rounding up the activists, assembling them on the helideck. Greenpeace International activists locked inside the radio room said they saw other activists detained on their knees with guns pointed at them.

Greenpeace Ship Detained in Spain

Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise protests oil prospecting in the Canary Islands (Photo: CopterClouds/ Greenpeace)

A Greenpeace ship was detained by Spanish authorities today in the port of Arrecife, Lanzarote, following last Saturday's protest against Repsol’s potential oil drilling in the Canary Islands. Spain’s Ministry of Public Works and Transportation (Ministerio de Fomento) has detained Arctic Sunrise, a ship operated by Greenpeace International, while an investigation is performed into the protest on November 15 which resulted in the injuries of two Greenpeace activists when the Spanish Navy allegedly rammed Arctic Sunrise, Greenpeace said.

Greenpeace In Legal Battle With U.K. Over Oil Exploration

Environmentalist group Greenpeace reportedly took the UK government to court over what it sees as Britain's failure to protect coral beds, whales, dolphins and other marine life from the effects of oil and gas exploration. Greenpeace officials said the government has failed to apply the European Union Habitats Directive to oil and gas exploration in the relatively deep waters of the Atlantic Frontier, where oil companies believe large new oil reserves are waiting to be tapped. Oil companies Texaco, Esso UK, Marathon Oil UK, Mobil North Sea, Enterprise Oil, Conoco Ltd., Statoil, Philips Petroleum UK, Elf Exploration And British Gas Exploration and Production are opposing Greenpeace's moves.

Russia Shuts Greenpeace Out of Arctic Sea Route

Greenpeace icebreaker Arctic Sunrise (Photo: Greenpeace)

The Russian government has reportedly denied permission for the Greenpeace icebreaker Arctic Sunrise to enter the increasingly busy Northern Sea Route (NSR), despite the ship having fulfilled all the requirements for such an entry. Greenpeace International beleives the decision is an attempt to prevent it from exposing the activities of Russian state-owned oil company Rosneft. Multiple vessels contracted by Rosneft and U.S. partner ExxonMobil are conducting seismic testing and geological work in the Kara Sea in preparation for offshore Arctic drilling.

Arctic Greenpeace Activists Board Drilling Platform

Photo credit Greenpeace

Greenpeace personnel board Russia's Gazprom Prirazlomnaya platform in the Pechora Sea. The activists aim at disrupting the platform’s operation and bring focus on climate change in the Arctic. The activists set off in three inflatable speedboats from the Greenpeace ship "Arctic Sunrise" and scaled the platform via mooring lines. Six climbers have taken up positions on the structure and claim to have interrupted the platform's operations. Greenpeace say their people are out of reach and have enough supplies to last them for several days.

Greenpeace Arctic Calls Russian Safety Complaints 'A Fantasy'

Photo of incident from the Russian Govt. video

Greenpeace International has branded as ‘a fantasy’ claims by Russia’s Investigative Committee that activists endangered the safety of Russian security officers in the course of their protest at a Russian Arctic oil platform. Greenpeace International has today published a slow motion video of an incident in which a Greenpeace boat comes to assist another one being harassed by armed security forces. The Greenpeace boat sails towards the middle of the port side of the security forces boat and then only briefly touches it with the nose, immediately turning away and making a 180° turn to the left.

Six Greenpeace Activists Leave Arctic-bound Oil Rig

AFP PhotoJay Directo

Six Greenpeace activists rappelled down from an oil rig in the Pacific Ocean on Saturday after spending six days living on the structure to protest against drilling in the Arctic, the environmental organization said. The multinational team climbed aboard Polar Pioneer, an oil rig leased by Royal Dutch Shell Plc that is bound for the Arctic, on Monday as it was being transported by a heavy-lift vessel about 750 miles (1,210 km) northwest of Hawaii. Worsening weather conditions that were expected to bring high swells led the six activists to leave the oil rig on Saturday…

Law of the Sea Tribunal Orders (Bonded) Release of 'Arctic Sunrise'

Arctic Sunrise: Photo credit Greenpeace

The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea has ordered the Russian Federation in a binding ruling to release the Greenpeace ship 'Arctic Sunrise' and the 28 activists and two freelance journalists on board upon payment of a EUR 3.6 million bond. According to Greenpeace International Russia is now under an obligation to comply with the order: the Russian Constitution itself states that international law forms an integral part of the Russian legal system and Russian courts are under an obligation to implement the order.

Greenpeace Activists Divert Helsinki-bound Coal Ship

Alppila. Photo by ESL Shipping Ltd

The environmental activist group Greenpeace managed to board and get a coal-carrying freighter on its way from St. Petersburg to change its course before arriving to Helsinki harbour. A Greenpeace activist has scaled the 155m long bulk carrier, Alppila, transporting coal to one of Finland’s most polluting power plants in central Helsinki. The coal ship and its climate-damaging cargo have now aborted its entry to the Port of Helsinki and now steam away from Helsinki accompanied by a Finnish coast guard vessel.

Greenpeace NZ Try to Impede Deep-water Drill Ship Operation

Noble Bob Douglas: Photo courtesy of Greenpeace

Noble Corporation, contracted to Texan petroleum company, is preparing to drill one of New Zealand's deepest ever exploratory wells in the Taranaki Basin with its drill-ship 'Noble Bob Douglas'. Protesters have admitted they cannot stop drilling off the coast of New Zealand, but intend to make it difficult for them, reports TVNZ News. The Greenpeace NZ blog informs: "... the calm of our peaceful flotilla was broken. In 24 hours we’ve gone from a collection of yachts enjoying the company of whales…

Greenpeace's 'Arctic 30' Arrive St. Petersburg, Russia

Photo courtesy of Greenpeace

Greenpeace International confirms that the train carrying 30 men and women detained after  a peaceful protest at a Gazprom Arctic oil platform has arrived in St Petersburg. The Arctic 30 departed from Murmansk in a prison wagon early on Monday and upon arrival in St Petersburg the wagon was detached and moved 1km away from the station. The authorities moved the detainees to transportation buses, surrounded by many police. It is not yet certain which SIZO (detention centre) in…

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