Greenpeace Africa has added its voice to those opposed to Shell’s seismic survey near the Wild Coast and has launched a petition calling for a stop to the project.
“In less than a week, the multinational oil and gas giant Shell will begin exploring for oil and gas near the Wild Coast in South Africa. This must not happen. Will you help us stop this?” asks Thandile Chinyavanhu, a Climate and Energy Campaigner with Greenpeace Africa.
Greenpeace said, “basically for months and typically non-stop, the seabed stretching over 6,000 square kilometres will be penetrated by seismic wave airgun blasts to identify oil and gas deep within the seafloor.
“These are loud. So loud that they can be incredibly harmful to marine life in the exploration area.
“What are we doing to call out Shell for their irresponsible behaviour? We are supporting a coalition of grassroots organisations that are opposing seismic testing, including communities and civil society movements along the Wild Coast.”
These organisations situated along the Wild Coast are best suited to exert pressure on Shell and the government to stop this seismic testing madness.
The coalition partners include Oceans Not Oil, groundWork, and South Durban Community Environment Alliance.
“The impacts range from temporary or permanent hearing loss to beach strandings and death.”
Greenpeace said seismic testing has been linked to decreased sightings of marine life like Dolphins, Whales, and Fish.
“The communities in these areas that depend on eco-tourism and fishing will be forever impacted by the disappearance of biodiversity in this area,” warned Chinyavanhu.
“If Shell finds an opportunity here for oil and gas, the impacts of drilling are immense, especially when things go wrong.”
Greenpeace said oil spills harm the marine environment for as long as decades after a spill. And the impacts to coastal communities and fisherfolk are beyond measure.
“The images of the Mauritius oil spill are still fresh in our minds from just over a year ago; we mustn’t allow this to happen again,” said Chinyavanhu.
“Closer to home, the uMbilo oil spill and the Algoa Bay oil spill earlier this month are a reminder of the risks fossil fuels pose to marine life and public health.
“Despite the exploration already being approved, enough of our voices can make a difference. Please add your voice.”
Greenpeace said the exploitation of coal, oil, and gas resources “pushes us further down the wrong path”, especially in light of South Africa’s commitment to the Paris Agreement and the Glasgow Climate Pact.
“Shell’s exploration is irresponsible and completely misaligned with the urgency of our climate crisis,” said Chinyavanhu.
“The need for urgent climate action is becoming increasingly apparent in our everyday lives. We need a Just Transition, not more oil drilling.”
Those who are interested in taking part in an action on the ground are invited to participate in activities planned in South Africa
- When: 28 November at 9:00
- Where: Joe Cool’s Endpoint: Point Water Surf Club
- Contact: Prathna +27 72 043 6418
- Host: Ban Animal Trading
- When: 4 December at 11:30 – 13:00
- Where: Shell Garage Umhlanga Rocks
- Host: Greenpeace Durban Vols
- When: 27 November at 12:00
- Where: Kings Beach
- Contact: Facebook event page
- Host: Shell Protest
- When: 5 December at 9:00
- Where: Hobbie Beach
- Contact: Chantal Bezuidenhout 061 504 2540
- Host: WESSA, Extinction Rebellion Nelson Mandela Bay
- When: 5 December split into two groups starting at 9:00 and at 10:00
- Where: Mnyameni Beach and Wild Coast Sun
- Contact: Nonhle Mbuthuma: 076 359 2982; Cromwell Sonjica: 063 052 3090; Sinegugu Zukulu 072 428 5109
- Host: Amadiba Crisis Committee, EC Environmental Network
- When: 6 December
- Where: Jekezi Village
- Contact: Nosintu Mcimeli: +27 73 412 5118
- Host: Abanebhongo Persons with Disabilities
- When: 1 December
- Where: 177 Main Rd, Muizenberg
- Contact: Facebook event page
- Host: AfriOceans Warriors
“Remember that Covid-19 is still a reality so please stay safe! Wear your mask, practice social distancing and sanitise as much as possible,” said Chinyavanhu.