Police remove banner at Statoil Offices in Wellington
UPDATE:Police remove banner unfurled by Oil Free Wellington at Statoil Offices in Wellington
Oil Free Wellington
Oil Free Wellington hung a banner at 9:30 this morning at the Statoil office headquarters in Wellington as the Petroleum Summit opened in Auckland. The banner, which read 'Statoil out of Northland: Stop Deep Sea Oil', has now been removed by police.
"The oil industry and the Government are pushing forward with their reckless fossil fuel agenda in pursuit of profit, despite community opposition. They can only expect to see more resistance from people all over Aotearoa as we defend our climate, environment and communities." Said Oil Free Wellington spokesperson Jessie Dennis
Today members of Oil Free Wellington have targeted the offices of Statoil, by attaching a banner reading 'Statoil out of Northland: Stop Deep Sea Oil' to the entrance of Vodafone on the Quay Midland Park, where Statoil's New Zealand office is located. The Norwegian oil company has been granted 15 year exploration permits off the coast of Northland.
"We've hung this banner today, as the Petroleum Summit opens in Auckland, to highlight the environmental destruction which Statoil has planned for Northland and our climate." Said Oil FreeWellington spokesperson Jessie Dennis
"We're also here to stand in solidarity with those who have traveled with the Waiho Papa Moana Hikoi from Northland to Auckland this week to show their opposition to Statoil's planned deep sea oildrilling."
Yesterday over a thousand people turned out in Auckland to join the Hikoi as it arrived in central Auckland and on final leg to the Petroleum Summit.
Northland community groups have demanded Statoil cancel its seismic testing programme for this Summer to protect marine life in the te Reinga Basin. It's feared that seismic testing planned for December will harm dolphins, whales, giant squid and fish.
"Along with being incredibly risky, deep sea oil brings few benefits to Northland communities. There simply aren't the lucrative jobs in the oil business for locals. Instead, the threats to their uses of the sea are all too real." Said Dennis
"The dramatic effects of climate change are only going to get worse. We face floods, droughts, mass extinction and food shortages as climate change accelerates. A just transition away from fossil fuels towards a more sustainable and equitable society is the only way forward."
This action coincided with Auckland Greenpeace activists who this morning disrupted the opening of the Petroleum Summit.
Oil Free Wellington opposes all new fossil fuel exploration, and stands with the people of Northland in their struggle against Statoil and deep sea oil.