Greenpeace protesting arctic oil plans

April 26, 2013 at 7:08 AM

MOSCOW, April 26 (UPI) -- Protesters chained themselves to oil barrels in front of the Moscow offices of Norwegian major Statoil because of arctic exploration plans, Greenpeace said.

Activists wearing polar bear costumes protested arctic oil plans.

Greenpeace said Norway is lauded typically for its environmental stewardship.

"But a dark shadow lies just behind this green and pleasant visage: an oil company whose plans could tarnish Norway's green reputation forever and put the arctic in serious trouble," the advocacy group said.

New Zealand actress Lucy Lawless last year was among the activists arrested following similar activity targeting arctic exploration plans off the coast of Alaska. Shell and other supermajors abandoned campaigns in Alaska following equipment issues and legislative uncertainty.

Greenpeace Executive Director Phil Radford said Shell's decision amounted to an admission that those expressing concerns about oil and natural gas exploration in arctic waters were right.

Greenpeace said Statoil has plans to drill in "almost every corner of the arctic." The advocacy group expressed further concern that Statoil would work with Russian oil company Rosneft, which Greenpeace says is "responsible for more spills than any other on the planet."

Warming temperatures are exposing vast unexplored deposits of oil and natural gas. Greenpeace says there is "no technology" available that could handle an arctic oil spill.

No comments were available from Statoil or Rosneft.

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