Tuesday, 3 December: The ‘Climate Uprising’ blockade of Austrian oil driller OMV’s Taranaki headquarters has now held strong for 36 hours and is entering its second night.
Around 100 people have been braving high winds and heavy rain to demand the Austrian oil giant surrenders it’s permit to explore for oil and gas in New Zealand.
Protestors have been blocking all entrances to OMV’s New Plymouth headquarters, forcing its employees to stay away from work for two full days so far.
Andrew Duncan from Kapiti spent his 74th birthday on the barricades of the protest.
"The world is falling apart and we need to hold it together. This is where I chose to be - the issue is too important to stay away," he says.
The Greenpeace-led occupation includes a wide range of people from around the country and has representatives from the School Strike 4 Climate movement, Extinction Rebellion, 350 Aotearoa, Oil Free Wellington, Climate Justice Taranaki, and more.
Greenpeace is calling on OMV to surrender its permits and stop all oil and gas exploration in New Zealand. Programme Director, Niamh O’Flynn, says Taranaki could be a prosperous clean energy hub in New Zealand.
"What is needed is the political will to justly transition these workers away from a dying industry and into renewables. That should be championed by the corporates currently making money out of this climate crisis," she says.