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OMV drills for gas in the Octagon

Dunedin people will gather in the Octagon at 12 o’clock today to witness Austrian oil giant OMV drilling for gas. The event is part of a national ‘climate uprising’ against OMV that will include thousands of people all around the country opposing OMV’s drilling plans, leading up to a peaceful protest at their office in New Plymouth next month.

OMV is one of 100 companies responsible for 71% of global emissions since 1988. They plan to drill for oil and gas this summer in the Great South Basin after completing exploratory drilling next month off Taranaki.

OMV escaped the government’s ban on new deep sea drilling last year by taking over Shell’s old permits.

Oil Free Otago, 350 Dunedin, Extinction Rebellion Otepoti, Seniors Climate Action Network, Greenpeace and others are working together to oppose further oil and gas exploration in this region.

“We’re here today to raise awareness about OMV’s plans because we’re concerned that many Dunedin people have no idea what they are up to.” said Oil Free Otago spokesperson Rosemary Penwarden.

“The national and global climate movement is fast becoming the biggest people’s movement in history. It’s a fight to protect our people and planet from profiteering climate criminals” she said. “OMV is one of those climate criminals.”

“We can’t even burn most of the oil, gas and coal already discovered if we are to preserve a liveable future” added Jen Olsen from Extinction Rebellion Otepoti. “While fires rage in Australia, Venice goes under water, floods and landslides hit from Guatemala to the UK, OMV chooses to disregard the science and explore for more planet-destroying oil and gas.

“The people of Dunedin won’t stand for it. It’s very personal for us. We will protect our wild southern ocean, our unique wildlife and beautiful, pristine beaches. How dare OMV come here and risk everything for short term profit?”

“Today’s event is a fun, family friendly way to spread a serious message. If OMV think they can drill in our ocean without resistance they had better think again. We will resist them every step of the way.”


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