Ireland

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Shell ignores the law but gets campaigners jailed

Shell to Sea Campaigners outside court

This week as it was revealed in the Irish Times that 20 months after entering into a legal agreement with local fishermen Shell has still not submitted an application as required to the Environmental Protection Agency to review the emissions licence for the experimental gas pipeline it is imposing on the people of Erris. Yet this week 27 Shell to Sea campaigners are being prosecuted on behalf of Shell in the local courts and today one of them received three five month sentences.

Many of the 27 at a previous court appearance, in the front row Niall is far right, Pat is in the middle and Maura is on the far left

ACTA and Intellectual Property

ACT won't go after your iPodsThe ACTA (Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement) is a trade agreement being negotiated by the Obama administration through the United States Office of the Trade Representative. The trade agreement is particularly interesting on a number of points.

Shell retreats as solidarity with Pat O'Donnell continues

Shell to Sea banner at the Spire in DublinThe week before last Erris fisherman Pat O'Donnell was jailed for seven months for his part in the communities ongoing resistance to Shell's attempt to impose an experimental gas pipeline on them. Across the country local Shell to Sea groups have been holding solidarity protests and other events for Pat. In Dublin this has included two protests and a public meeting in UCD (an audio recording of the meeting is at the bottom of this article). Meanwhile Shell have been forced to admit a temporary defeat in the face of local opposition and call off the construction they have planned for Glengad this year.

Protests at Shell HQ against jailing of fisherman Pat O'Donnell

Protest at Shell HQ in DublinOver 50 Shell to Sea campaigners gathered at the Shell head quarters in Leeson street Dublin Tuesday evening to protest at the jailing of 52 year old Erris fisherman Pat O'Donnell for resisting Shell's experimental gas pipeline. Pat received a seven month sentence which has the added benefit for Shell of taking his boat off of Broadhaven Bay for the period they need to carry out major underwater construction work and repairs. Pat has twice previously been arrested and held without charge when Shell has needed to carry out work in the bay.

Why did the union leadership cancel the Dec 3rd national strike in Ireland?

This is a table of what public sector workers in Ireland really earn based on the data given in the reply to a Dail question in Feb 09.On the cancellation of the Dec 3rd strike and the disasterous ICTU negotiating position

The cancellation of the Dec 3rd Public Sector strike is a blow to the developing movement against the cuts on the scale of the cancellation of the March 30th strike at the start of the year. The so called compromise ICTU have been negotiating for is a further blow, it seems designed to drive a wedge between workers and fails to answer the main problem public sector workers have, the inability to take further cuts. But the strike that did happen on 24th November has brought 250,000 workers into their first experience of the power we collectively hold and points towards an alternative.

The meaning of the 24th November public sector strike

On the 24th of November something extraordinary happened. Some 250,000 workers acted together in a day-long strike against the public sector wage cuts planned by the government. The vast majority of these workers had never gone on strike before, yet across almost all workplaces the strike involved 90% or more of those working.

Number of strike days each year - the 2009 is just for
Thursdays strike, in fact the final figure would include the
many small disputes that have gone on this year

 

The Shell to Sea campaign so far

The campaign against Shell’s inland refinery and high-pressure pipeline near Rossport in Co Mayo has been long and extraordinary, inspiring communities everywhere. Local residents began their campaign in 2000, adopting the name Shell to Sea in early 2005. Tactics have ranged from High Court actions, planning objections and lobbying politicians to grassroots campaigning and civil disobedience.

Why is Shell’s experimental pipeline in Mayo so dangerous?

When the inland gas refinery near Rossport was proposed in the late 1990s, many local people welcomed the project. But when they did some research, they quickly became extremely concerned. They discovered this was an experimental project; nothing like it had been tried anywhere in the world.

Ireland’s offshore oil & gas worth at least €420,000,000,000

Royal Dutch Shell, Statoil, Exxon Mobil and other global corporations will be taking billions of euro out of the country in the next couple of decades. In other countries they would have to give the majority of this money to the State, but not in Ireland. In 1987, then Minister Ray Burke, later jailed for corruption, abolished the State’s 50% share and all royalties.

Three wards in Crumlin children’s hospital were closed recently because of a €9.6 million deficit. The value of our offshore fields is 43,750 times the cost of keeping those wards open. It is 300 times the money that will be raised from the public sector ‘pensions levy’.

Shell's prosecutions failing in Belmullet

In order to break the resistance of the inhabitants of Erris to the Shell experimental gas pipeline dozens of people are now being prosecuted. Belmullet District Court is in the second day of a special 3 day session to carry out Shell's prosecutions. But things are not going Shell's way, of the 16 people being prosecuted in yesterdays session only one prosecution resulted in a fine.

  


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