Extinction Rebellion activists arrested after gas rig protest

The three women were then arrested

Monday, January 6, 2020

Climate change protesters have been arrested after they climbed the Scottish gas rig to try and stop it from heading out to the North Sea.

Extinction Rebellion Scotland said three of its members boarded the Valaris 122 rig in Dundee harbour this morning.

Five activists had set out in a boat at around 11:30am, with three of them making it on board and scaling its towers in a bid to prevent its departure and halt its “extractive and destructive operations”.

Those who climbed the structure, Jo, 34, Alison, 28, and Fiona, 23,  left the site later this afternoon because of "unsafe weather conditions" and were arrested upon their descent, according the climate activism group.

Five protesters made their way to the rig by boat

The rig is due to come on contract to Shell later this month and be sent to the Shearwater gas field.

Jo, a gardener from Edinburgh, said: “I am doing this for my niece Ivy, who is an incredible little human.

“I don't want to say to her that I didn't take a stand when I had the choice and left it to other people to sort it out.

“I am going to give it my best shot and go down fighting because I can see the world through her eyes and I want to protect things for her.”

Alison, from Dundee, said Shell “is not an asset to our economy” as she criticised government subsidies to the fossil fuel industry.

But chief executive of industry body OGUK, Deirdre Michie, dubbed the action a “dangerous and short-sighted stunt”, saying that the oil and gas industry is “part of the solution” to climate change.

Extinction Rebellion has issued three demands to the Scottish and UK governments, asking them to “tell the truth about the devastating impact of the fossil fuel industry”, “act now to decommission fossil fuel infrastructure” and establish a legally binding citizens assembly to “put decision making processes into the hands of the people”.

The organisation said today's action was the first of many planned across Scotland over the next fortnight as part of "Rig Rebellion 2.0".

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