Greenpeace delegation boards Arctic oil rig demanding missing spill plan
by Nick Young
June 4, 2011
It never really gets dark here in the Arctic but in the soft silver light of the early morning five inflatable speedboats left the side of the Esperanza. They carried a delegation of eighteen activists and headed for the giant Leiv Eiriksson looming on the horizon.
Their mission – to find Cairn’s elusive Oil Spill Response Plan. Cairn is hiding it so we’re going to the one place where there must be a copy of it!
Dodging the rig’s Danish navy guard, the team climbed on to the rig and headed for the accommodation deck. There they began looking for the drill manager in order to ask for the secret oil spill document.
To ensure the delegation reached the rig we moved the Esperanza to the limit of the 500m exclusion zone imposed by the Danish navy.
Despite repeated requests by Greenpeace and over 15,000 others, the rig’s operators Cairn Energy, have so far refused to publish the plan.
It’s pretty obvious why Cairn won’t tell the world how it would clean up a BP-style oil spill here in the Arctic, and that’s because it simply can’t be done.
Experts say the freezing temperatures and remote location mean a deep water blow-out here in the Arctic would be an irreversible disaster.
If they published the plan, the real risk to this pristine area, and the real risk of investing in such a reckless venture would be plain to see.
We have to draw a line in the ice and stop the Arctic oil rush.