Activists Stop Unloading of Oil Shale Shipment at ExxonMobil Refinery

In an attempt to prevent an oil tanker from delivering a shipment of shale oil to an ExxonMobil oil refinery, Greenpeace activists locked themselves on to the tanker in South Australia.

One activist was successful in preventing the ship from raising its anchor to berth at the refinery by attaching himself to the anchor chain. Greenpeace wants to tell the world: "Don't Buy ExxonMobil."

The shale oil that was carried on the ship was produced at the Stuart Project, an experimental plant adjacent to Australia's famous Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area. The Stuart Project has had discussions with companies all over the world for investments so that it can expand its shale oil project. A Canadian mining company, Suncor, pulled out of the project in 2001 citing concerns about its environmental impacts and financial viability. Three years behind schedule, $100 million over budget and plagued by technical problems, ExxonMobil is the only company that will buy the shale oil.

"Once again ExxonMobil's actions speak for itself as the number one global warming villain," said Melanie Duchin, Greenpeace Climate Campaigner. "The company has done more than any other oil company to sabotage government action on global warming and keep the United States and the world addicted to dirty fossil fuels. Investing in shale oil - a fossil fuel that produces even more global warming pollution than oil - is par for ExxonMobil's course given the company's track record on global warming."

This protest is the latest in an escalating worldwide campaign against ExxonMobil. ExxonMobil routinely gives political contributions to elected officials who oppose action on global warming and spends millions on efforts to secure government subsidies for dirty energy. A Deutsche Bank Report on ExxonMobil warned the company of Greenpeace's campaign stating "...being handed a reputation as environmental enemy number one has to be considered a brand risk."

"ExxonMobil has done more than any other oil company to keep the U.S. addicted to oil," continued Duchin. "People have the right to know that when they buy ExxonMobil, they are supporting the number one global warming villain. If we are going to stop global warming, we must stop ExxonMobil from polluting the planet and investing in dirty energy sources like shale oil."

The eight arrested activists, six climbers and two boat drivers, have been charged with trespass. Two Greenpeace inflatables being used as safety boats were also taken by the police during the protest.

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