Climate / Greenpeace stage protest against Shell in Brent field

Greenpeace activists from the Netherlands, Germany and Denmark boarded two oil platforms in Shell’s Brent field on Monday morning. Photo: Marten van Dijk/Greenpeace

GREENPEACE activists have climbed on to two oil installations in the North Sea in protest of Shell’s intention to leave the legs of three platforms standing in the sea after decommissioning the topsides.

The campaigners from the international environmental pressure group started their protest in the Brent field – 115 miles northeast of Shetland – on Monday morning.


Joris Thijssen, director of Greenpeace Netherlands, said: “Shell’s plans are outrageous and go against international agreements to protect the sea.

“The 11,000 tons of oil that is still stored in the foundation of the platforms will sooner or later end up in the sea. That is unacceptable.

“The North Sea is not a garbage dump, Shell has to clean up its mess. Greenpeace urges all OSPAR governments to protect the sea and not to give in to the pressure of a major polluter Shell.”

A ban on dumping installations and platforms in the North East Atlantic ocean was agreed in 1998 by all members of the OSPAR Commission. Shell has requested an exemption from the UK government.


Shell said: “We can confirm that two protestors have boarded the Brent Alpha platform and one has climbed on to the Brent Bravo concrete legs.

“Their safety and that of our workers are our prime concern at this moment.”

Greenpeace and Shell were locked in a major battle in 1995 over the future of the oil storage facility Brent Spar, which the oil company planned to dump in the ocean.

After months of confrontation on the high seas and faced with a massive loss in reputation Shell eventually gave in to international pressure to have the Brent Spar towed to Norway for decommissioning.

Photo: Marten van Dijk/Greenpeace