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Daily blogs from the frontlines of the Greenpeace planet down under. 

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  • The music of the voices for the Arctic

    Blogpost by Elvira Jiménez and Erlend Tellnes - June 20, 2016 at 18:41

    Greenpeace holds a historic performance with pianist Ludovico Einaudi on the Arctic Ocean

    When you see the Arctic with your own eyes the sheer beauty of it is overwhelming. You are overcome by many sensations and emotions. The cold, the silence, the cracking sound of the ice. The Arctic is pristine, with life popping out to welcome you when you least expect it. It is undoubtedly unique.

    Two weeks ago the Arctic Sunrise departed from the Netherlands carrying a very special load. With her, the voices of 8 million people all over the world who have joined the movement to save the Arctic and their many different reasons why it should be protected. Whether it be because of its biodiversity, because of its role in regulating the climate, because of the future of the new generations or simply because it is a natural treasure worth protecting from corporate greed.

    In Svalbard (Norwa... Read more >

  • Earth is in danger, but only we can save ourselves

    Blogpost by Peter Willcox - June 20, 2016 at 9:14

    I’ve been a captain for Greenpeace for 35 years, fighting for our environment in every corner of the globe. I’ve confronted polluters, poachers, smugglers, terrorists, criminals – both private and corporate – armies, navies, vigilantes and you-name-it. I’ve been arrested, jailed, had my ships chased, shot at, boarded and attacked, and had French commandos bomb and sink my ship under my feet – killing a crew-mate in the process.

    Rainbow Warrior bombing 1985 On July 10, 1985 the Rainbow Warrior was bombed by the “action” branch of the French foreign intelligence services. The Greenpeace ship was in the port of Auckland, New Zealand on its way to a protest against a planned French nuclear test in Moruroa. Photographer Fernando Pereira drowned on the sinking ship.

    Wherever I go, people ask me why I continue to take the... Read more >

  • Protecting the Amazon, side by side with the Munduruku

    Blogpost by Danicley de Aguiar - June 17, 2016 at 9:11

    This morning I woke up in the Sawré Muybu village with a strong sense of anticipation. Today we start a series of collaborations with the Munduruku Indigenous People to defend their ancestral territories and protect the heart of the Amazon – the Tapajós River basin. From the structure that we set up in the forest at the village of the Munduruku, I can see the coming day framed by the traditional roof. I can hear the nearby river and the wind shaking the leaves of the trees.

    Blue-fronted amazon (Amazona aestiva) inside the house of Juarez Saw Munduruku, Cacique (chief) of village Sawré Muybu Indigenous Land, home to the Munduruku people, Pará state, Brazil. 21 Feb, 2016  © Valdemir Cunha / Greenpeace

    Over the last few weeks I have been working with the Munduruku to prepare for the arrival of activists, Indigenous leaders and community members to draw the world's attention to the Tapajós River and the people who live there. The Munduruku have bravely resisted the Brazilian government’s plans to build dams on the ... Read more >

  • US Govt concedes to NZ people power on nuclear free ships

    Blogpost by Russel Norman - June 15, 2016 at 16:41

    The USS Texas is met by the Peace Squadron as it arrives in Waitemata harbour, Auckland on August 2, 1983. The growing anti-nuclear movement in New Zealand was hostile to visits from US ships because the Americans refused to confirm or deny whether their ships carried nuclear weapons. Public opinion was increasingly in favour of banning these visits. Between 1978 and 1983 opposition to nuclear-armed ship visits rose from 32% to 72%. In 1985 the Government effectively banned nuclear ship visits. New Zealand was the first country to declare itself nuclear free when it passed legislation in 1987. Greenpeace / Gil Hanly

    If the US Government sends a warship to visit New Zealand at the end of the year it will be on the nuclear free terms set by the people of New Zealand 30 years ago.

    That is an amazing victory for the goal of a nuclear weapons free world, and it is an amazing victory for people power.

    Thirty years ago the people of New Zealand drew a line in the sand on nuclear weapons and nuclear power. They said we will be nuclear free, so if any other government wants to send a warship to New Zealand it has to be free of nuclear weapons and not nuclear powered.

    The US Government responded with an ultimatum - if you do this thing, they said, you will be forever isolated, and there will never be another US warship visit.

    But the people of New Zealand stood firm. They stood firm on their right to make ...

    Read more >
  • How India’s capital switched on the sun

    Blogpost by Ruhie Kumar and Madhulika Varma - June 13, 2016 at 9:49

    Today in Delhi we are celebrating something big! Usually in May and June Delhiites complain of scorching heat and how we are cursed with bad weather, water shortages and power blackouts. The same is true for other big crowded metro cities. But now we have something different, something that puts Delhi a step forward in sustainable living. We can now use the capital’s spacious rooftops to harvest solar power, whether we own a rooftop or not!  

    What’s so special about this celebration? After years of patience and persistence, Delhi’s solar policy has finally arrived. It all started back in April 2013 when an enthusiastic group of Greenpeace India volunteers worked through the sweltering Delhi heat, organising renewable energy fairs and talking to people about solar power. The Switch on the... Read more >

  • With the departure of a Spanish oil company from the Chukchi Sea, only Shell still holds a drilling lease in US Arctic waters. Here’s why an Arctic oil boom never happened and why it probably never will. Read more >

    Activists in a tribal canoe hoist a "Save The Arctic" message as they stand in the way of Shell's Polar Pioneer drilling rig as it attempts to depart Elliott Bay for Alaska. 15 Jun, 2015  © Marcus Donner / Greenpeace

    Now that Spanish oil company Repsol has relinquished the last of its 93 leases in the Arctic’s Chukchi Sea, only one leaseholder is left in US Arctic waters – Shell. Why the company is holding onto a single lease after losing billions of dollars and any reputation for competence it might have had is anybody’s guess.

    But the fact remains: drilling in the Arctic is dangerous and expensive for oil companies, catastrophic for the environment and unwelcome by the communities who live there.

    A Little History

    Once upon a time, way back in the 1980s and 1990s, oil companies rushed to purcha...

  • A new chapter for Arctic oil? Not on our watch.

    Blogpost by Sophie Allain - June 9, 2016 at 7:38

    The 18th May 2016 was just an ordinary Wednesday for most. But for the petroleum industry in the Arctic, it was the "start of a new chapter".

    If Arctic oil were a fiction novel it would make a particularly dark drama, with no shortage of tragic irony. Sadly it is a very real threat - and it certainly does not need a new chapter.

    In fact the whole oily saga has been overly drawn out for several decades and the plot is looking thinner and thinner: Shell pulled out of the Arctic last year with their tail between their legs; oil production in Norway has halved since the turn of the century; crude oil prices have plummeted to less than half of June 2014 levels; and earlier this year a bunch of big oil companies, including Conoco Philips and Shell, quietly relinquished claims they once hoped wo... Read more >

  • What happens in the Arctic affects us all

    Blogpost by Kirsten Thompson - June 8, 2016 at 11:13

    Narwhals breaching in icy waters in the US.  © Glenn Williams / National Institute of Standards and Technology

    The Arctic is a remote wilderness that is home to some of the most iconic, and threatened, wildlife on Earth, including polar bears, narwhal and Arctic foxes. Few of us have been lucky enough to explore the expanses of sea ice, glaciers or ice-sheets, yet we are inextricably linked to this vast region and it plays an integral role in our global climate system. Rising temperatures in the Arctic region appear to be influencing weather systems in other areas of the world, though the details of the complex processes involved are unclear.

    The Arctic region is warming at more than twice the rate of other areas of the world in a phenomenon known as 'Arctic amplification'. The sea ice is melting earlier and the total area of summer sea ice has, on average, fallen markedly over the last 30 years.... Read more >

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