Top news: 18 Greenpeace activists arrested after boarding Cairn Energy’s oil rig; U.S. suspends operation at TransCanada oil pipeline; radioactive leak fears at Fukushima; seabed mining emerges as new threat to marine ecosystems; Greenpeace and Glastonbury are searching for emerging eco-artists.

Greenpeace activists climb onto the 53,000 tonne Leiv Eiriksson.
Photo: Greenpeace activists climb onto the 53,000 tonne Leiv Eiriksson.
© Steve Morgan / Greenpeace

#SaveTheArctic: The hunt for Cairn Energy’s missing oil spill plan continues. Over the weekend, 18 Greenpeace activists boarded and stopped the drilling operations of the Leiv Eiriksson rig, for the second time in one week. The activists demanded a copy of Cairn’s oil response plan, which has yet to be seen. The story appeared in many media outlets worldwide, including Daily Express (UK), The Independent (UK) and NPR (U.S.). In the meantime, Cairn Energy has filed legal papers with a Dutch court, in an attempt to fine Greenpeace millions of pounds a day for disrupting its oil drilling operations. 80% of respondents to a Guardian opinion poll were opposed to the fine.

#OilSpill: The fact that oil spills are not merely a thing of fantasy - as Cairn Energy would have us believe - has been proven by recent oil spills on TransCanada’s oil pipeline. The U.S. Government has ordered the TransCanada Corporation to shut operation of its one-year-old Keystone pipeline, which carries oil extracted from Alberta tar sands to the United States. The order was issued in response to two oil spills which occurred on the pipeline during the last month, one of which involved over 10,000 gallons of oil.

#Fukushima: Problems at the Fukushima power plant continue: last week, TEPCO admitted that more radioactive water could begin spilling into the sea by June 20th if a glitch in setting up a new decontamination system, caused one of the reactors could run out of contaminated water storage space. Junichi Sato from Greenpeace commented on this, saying: "This is a scenario that TEPCO could have anticipated... It is a serious problem that the firm has yet to take measures against this. If a big amount leaks continuously, then maritime contamination will spread even more".

#Oceans: A conference about the environmental consequences of seabed mining practices opened in Fiji on Monday. Seabed mining as a technique for extracting precious metals from the seabed was considered too costly to be worthwhile in the past; however, with technological advancements it is becoming more attractive for the mining companies. Read more about this new threat to the world oceans here

#Glastonbury: With 15 days left until the start of this year’s Glastonbury festival, Greenpeace is getting ready with its environmentally friendly recording studio. The recording studio will be made of wood and straw and open to any up and coming eco-artists. And even better, the recordings will be used at a later date as part of “an exciting project”. Attending the festival and want to get involved? For more details check out this Greenpeace page.


That's it for today's environmental news.

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