Beautiful, sure, but that ocean’s raging and it's not a rarity in these parts. A good place for exploratory drilling? Not bloody likely. (Photo by Max Zappas)
The Fight Against The Proposed Drilling In The Australian Bight
There are just 28 days to save Australian waters from probable peril.
It's the story that won't go away. The ludicrous and irresponsible bid of multinational companies to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight has reached fever pitch in the last few days after Norway-based company Equinor—the latest in a string of companies to acquire the exploratory drilling permits for the region—released their lofty drilling plans to the public prior to them being submitted to NOPSEMA (National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority).
"Is there oil in the Great Australian Bight? Possibly. Can we find out safely? Absolutely," is the line that their PR department is spinning.
Is the surf community buying it? Absolutely not!
This in black would be an unparalleled tragedy. (Photo by Ben Jackson)
I've breezed through the 400 pages of bumpf Equinor released on Tuesday, and despite not being quite as insulting as BP's proposal (which claimed that an oil spill—like their incident in the gulf of Mexico—would provide a "welcome boost to the local economy.") it's just more of the same. The crux of the matter—aside from the fact that instead of continuing to pillage the earth’s resources we should be dedicating everything we’ve got to weaning ourselves off fossil fuels—is that the Great Australian Bight is one of the most rugged coastlines in the world. “Rugged” gets thrown around a lot when describing coasts, but here it’s justified. The Bight is open to the full force of the Southern Ocean, with wild storms blowing in from Antarctica and smashing into exactly where they’re proposing to drill. No oil company in the world can guarantee that their rigs can withstand this sort of tempest. That's why BP and Chevron have already been sent packing. Despite portraying a greener image, Equinor is no different.
Here's what the predicted reality of a spill would look like. Hard to find a word more fitting than devastating.
Something worth protecting if ever there was. (Photo by SA Rips)
Several other top Aussies have chimed in on the matter, including Julian Wilson, Taj Burrow, Chippa Wilson, and Ethan Ewing, who had unkind words for the Norwegian multinational, which brought in 61 Billion USD in 2017.
Julian Wilson wrote, on his Instagram:
@equinor it’s great that you portray yourself as clean energy focused/conscious and “green” to the homeland in Norway but we see what you are attempting to do in the bight and don’t like it! This map shows their own projection of a worst case scenario oil spill and where it would reach...it is terrifying! Considering the conditions in that stretch of ocean, I don’t think a worst case scenario situation is far fetched. There is time (only 28 days) to have your say to NOPSEMA they have to approve the environment plan and also pass on all comments to Equinor who supposedly have said they will not go ahead without a “social license” so let your voice be heard.