The more active of the world’s activists certainly have a knack for grabbing the spotlight. This time, the show was put on by Greenpeace. Playing leading roles were six Greenpeace International activists, including the organization’s executive director Kumi Naidoo, who boarded Gazprom’s Arctic oil platform in the Pechora Sea and remained there for about 15 hours. Making a special appearance, though their showing probably wasn’t part of the script, were Gazprom workers. The workers hosed the protestors with water amid freezing temperatures until the protestors succumbed and left the platform. “To avoid unnecessary risk in these freezing Arctic conditions, the activists have decided to come down. … The bravery of all of these climbers interrupted a major Arctic oil operation, and by doing so brought the world’s attention to this era defining issue,” Greenpeace said in a statement. “This occupation was just one part of a new movement to save the Arctic that will not be intimidated by water cannons or other forms of corporate brutality.” Less than three days later, Greenpeace struck again. This time, activists said they attached their boat to the anchor of a Russian ship taking workers to an oil platform in the Arctic. Detailing their plight on a blog, which includes video, Greenpeace said scientists announced the Arctic summer sea ice reached a record low. The activists want to send a message to Gazprom and others like it that the “melting ice is not a business opportunity.” The group’s goal to save the Arctic from drilling continues. I have always admired people who stand up for what they believe in. But chaining the boat you’re riding in to a ship or climbing aboard an Arctic oil platform? Seriously? You couldn’t pay me a million dollars to do that. In the Pechora Sea, the activists were hosed with water. Can you imagine not just being doused with water, but being hosed with water in Arctic temperatures? These activists are putting their lives at risk in dangerous situations. Thankfully, they know when to leave. If their mission was to stop Gazprom from its drilling plan, their efforts worked for a short while. But as far as I know, Gazprom’s Arctic drilling plan is still in motion. However, if the goal of the activists was to bring attention to the company’s drilling program, their mission was accomplished. Yet, sometimes I wonder if the message is lost, or buried, being outshined by the extreme act itself. Could the activists be seeking notoriety despite the safety risks? Probably. Naidoo even blogged about being knocked off course by a big swell during his first attempt to climb. “I spent several minutes in the icy water fighting with the rope. Defeated and fighting the cold, I had to retreat to the boat,” Naidoo wrote. He made it on a subsequent attempt. On Tuesday, Greenpeace said two activists from Finland and Germany attached their inflatable to mooring lines linking the Anna Akhmatova and Prirazlomnaya. But it appears that the Russians have less patience with protestors than Western operators because the Anna continued boarding. The anchor was pulled, winching the Greenpeace boat into the air and dumping the activists into the water. The Russian Coast Guard remained on standby but didn’t intervene despite requests from the Prirazlomnaya, according to Greenpeace. Although the effort in Russia to stop the Arctic drilling was man-made, Mother Nature did a much better job of stopping exploration and production in the Gulf of Mexico (GoM). Tropical Storm Isaac eventually developed into a hurricane as it traveled west in the GoM, forcing more than 90% of oil production there to shut-in. The storm moved in just as Labor Day approaches. Time will only tell how this will impact gas prices, which have been rising steadily in the past month. The hurricane, combined with a deadly explosion at Venezuela’s Amuay refinery that killed 48 people, nudged gasoline prices higher. Price Futures Group analyst Phil Flynn told the Associated Press that oil producers will take more oil out of inventory in the coming weeks to make up any lost production. The storm also is expected to slow oil imports in the GoM. However, by Tuesday afternoon, the national average for a gallon of gasoline had increased less than a penny to $3.756 per gallon, about 4 cents higher than a week ago, according to AAA, Wright Express and the Oil Price Information Service, the Associated Press reported. So maybe gas prices might not rise too much. There’s always hope. Contact the author, Velda Addison, at email@example.com.
2024-03-01 - Range’s dividend is payable on March 29 to stockholders of record by March 15.
2024-02-29 - Permian Resources’ dividends are payable March 21 to shareholders of record by March 13.
2024-02-28 - Kosmos Energy’s fourth quarter continued the operational success seen in its third quarter earnings 2023 report.
2024-02-27 - Former CEO Peter Faricy departed SunPower Corp. on Feb. 26, according to the company.
2024-02-27 - Berkshire Hathaway’s Warren Buffett added that the U.S. electric power situation is “ominous.”