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Shell to Sea activists blockade lorries at Bellanaboy

category mayo | environment | press release author Friday April 13, 2007 11:13author by S2S Watch Report this post to the editors

Activists from the Shell to Sea campaign are attempting to block lorries removing peat by chaining themselves to the lorries attempting to enter the site at Bellanaboy, Erris, County Mayo. Two protestor have already been slightly injured by Gardaí but there are, as yet, no arrests.

Activists from the Shell to Sea campaign are attempting to block lorries removing peat by chaining themselves to the lorries attempting to enter the site at Bellanaboy, Erris, County Mayo. Two protestor have already been slightly injured by Gardaí but there are, as yet, no arrests.

This entirely peaceful protest is in response to the escalation of activity at the government-backed Shell project, whereby thousands of tons of surface peat are being removed from the site and dumped 11KM away, in advance of the oral hearings to decide on whether the operating license for the huge gas refinery should be allowed.

Shell to Sea campaigner and local resident Micheál Ó Seighin said; "We welcome people taking non-violent direction to stop Shell's scheme. This has never been a purely local issue, it has always had national and international dimensions. Not only are people concerned entitled to protest, they are obliged to stand up for what is right."

Campaigner James Moore who is currently at the protest said:

"People opposed to Shell's scheme are forced to take actions like this to bring attention to the fact that Irish resources have been given away for nothing to big energy companies. Legitimate criticism of Fianna Fáil's handling of this conflict has been met with a refusal to even address the concerns of those of us who think that profits from the Corrib gas field should be spent on our hospitals and health service."

Editors' notes:

1 The oral hearings into the EPA license for the refinery at Bellanaboy start next Monday, April 16th. The company has not come up with a route for the pipeline connecting the gas field to the refinery, if they are licensed to operate it. In 2005, five people were imprisoned for three months for protesting against the government-backed scheme.

2 Yesterday Shell offered to pay compensation in relation to the 2004 reserves scandal, when the company was accused of fraudulently overstating its value. Without admitting any liability, $178.3 million US dollars plus administrative charges has been offered to those affected. The company claim the scandal was the result of "a genuine error".

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