Lysekil, Sweden, 10 September 2020 – Today the Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior and activists from Greenpeace Nordic peacefully blocked the entrance of the Brofjorden port to stop the oil tanker Grena Knutsen, destined for Preem’s oil refinery. Greenpeace demands that Prime Minister Stefan Löfven and the Swedish government choose Paris over Preem, and stop the planned expansion of the refinery in Lysekil.

Captain Fernando Romo, on board the Rainbow Warrior said:  
“The Rainbow Warrior is anchored in the canal to stop arriving oil tankers, closing the transport route for Preemraff, and thereby halting Preem’s ongoing environmental crime.”

The protest comes as the Swedish government is deciding on an application from the oil company Preem to expand their oil refinery in Lysekil. If the Swedish government grants Preem permission to expand, it would increase the CO2 emissions from Preemraff by one million tonnes per year and make the refinery the single biggest source of CO2 in the country [1]. An expansion of Preemraff is incompatible with Sweden reaching its national emissions targets [2], its commitments to the Paris agreement and would prevent Sweden from advocating for increased climate ambition in the EU, which is crucial in global climate negotiations.

Isadora Wronski, Programme Manager for Greenpeace Sweden said:
“Oil is no longer a foundation of prosperity, it’s a threat to our social, environmental and physical well-being. We’ve made national and international commitments and Sweden is one of the best placed countries in the world to transition away from oil to a sustainable society. We are watching, because it’s impossible to be a champion of the people and climate while allowing the expansion of an oil refinery which chains us to fossil fuel infrastructure for decades to come. Prime Minister Löfvén must choose the Paris Agreement over Preem.”

Jennifer Morgan, International Executive Director for Greenpeace International said: 
“Preem and its dirty cronies are racking up a tab we’ll have to pay with our own money, health and ecosystems. Sweden could lead the charge from the fossil fuel era to a sustainable energy future, but Prime Minister Löfven needs to listen to the scientists, not the lobbyists – now that would be true leadership.”

As a precaution against Covid-19, the activists and the crew on board the Rainbow Warrior have quarantined and tested negative prior to the action. The Rainbow Warrior has informed the tanker Grena Knutsen and Swedish law enforcement about the intentions of the peaceful action and the means of civil disobedience that Greenpeace uses. 

ENDS

Notes for editors:
Photo and video from the activity is found here.

A campaign briefing can be found here.

(1) Background on the Preemraff court case and appeals
(2) Read more about Preem’s expansion and the Swedish climate law here

This action is part of the wider movement Stoppa Preemraff’s “weeks of action” against Preem’s expansions, including the Flotilla Rainbow Warrior participated in on 5 September. 

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