The proposed requirements would unnecessarily shorten an already brief window for exploratory drilling in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas while dramatically boosting the costs of those operations, dissuading companies from drilling in the region, industry representatives said in formal comments filed with the government.
Organizers had prepared to engage in civil disobedience to stop work on the drill rig, but Seattle police said Monday afternoon that no one had been arrested and the demonstration remained peaceful. A few dozen officers followed the march on foot and bicycle and kept watch at the terminal.
Hundreds of protesters in kayaks and other vessels turned out on Saturday for a protest dubbed the “Paddle in Seattle,” and on Monday, organizer say they expect hundreds to flood the Port of Seattle’s Terminal 5 and Harbor Island.
Kayakers gathered in formation and hoisted signs and banners that read: “Climate Justice,” ”Oil-Free Future,” ”Shell No, Seattle Draws The Line,” and “We can’t burn all the oil on the planet and still live on it.”
The watery protest marked a pivotal moment for an environmental movement increasingly mobilized around climate change, but the scene also suggested how outmatched Shell’s opponents have been as they try to keep the petroleum giant from continuing its $6 billion effort to open new oil and gas reserves in one of the world’s most dangerous maritime environments.
ConocoPhillips paid about $506 million for 98 exploration leases about 100 miles off Alaska’s north coast in 2008. In April of 2013, the company suspended its plans to drill an exploratory well in the sea, citing uncertainty in regulations.
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