April 19, 2014

"As the first barrels head for Europe, we cannot afford – and do not need – new sources of harder to reach fossil fuels..."

The Guardian "After months of delays, Russian state-owned oil and gas company Gazprom has announced that the first ever shipment of oil from offshore Arctic waters has begun the journey to Europe." by John Sauven

'This is the oil from the rig that the Arctic 30 went to jail for peacefully protesting against. It has been logistically challenging. Extracting even small amounts of oil in extreme Arctic conditions has taken them longer, and cost them more, than the company had planned.

'But Gazprom has done it and claims first place in the race to exploit the melting Arctic sea ice for more of the fossil fuels that caused the melting in the first place. It is a defining moment for Vladimir Putin's Russia, heralded with great fanfare as a new source of power and profit for years to come.

'Thankfully, most of us recognise the madness of celebrating a new source of fossil fuels in the Arctic. And, just as importantly, the last few months have shown us just how important it is that we cut our dependence on fossil fuels from Kremlin-controlled companies.

'The Ukraine crisis has led Europe's leaders to demand an "energy independence" plan. In June this year, EU leaders will meet to decide their approach.'

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