Monday 27 February 2012

OIL RIGS IN CANARY ISLANDS: not only a rumor. Pincha aqui para la version en español

While politicians and people from the ministry debate to decide who is the one in charge of making the decision of whether or not to allow oil prospecting in the nearby of Lanzarote and Fuerteventura, CleanOceanProject would like to inform about the seriousness of the case. As NGO CleanOceanProject has been for 10 years cleaning the beaches of Fuerteventura, island where it’s located. During these years it has already been found great amounts of oil from dumps into the ocean, therefore it would be unthinkable the amount of waste poured into the ocean if the oil prospection is allowed in the Central Atlantic.

The enterprise of Repsol plans to use for the drilling 616.060 hectare of the east coast of Fuerteventura and Lanzarote, amount of nearly 2.5 times the size of these two islands. The company seems to ignore the fact that some of that area belongs to the Natural Reserve of Biosphere and that in 2004 the Maritime International Organization declared this part of the ocean as especially sensitive.

From the point of view of the environment it would be a disaster. Due to the land, ocean and climate features of the Canary Islands tones of different sea creatures live there and nearly one third of them are endemic. Different species of cetacean, turtles, fish and thousands of invertebrates live and eat from the ground coral that will be destroyed if the drilling is allowed. Never mind the polluting gases caused by the evaporation of the hydrocarbon.

From the point of view of development it would mean a step backwards. With time man has discovered how to substitute finite and dangerous forms of energy with alternative energies which are cleaner and endless. In fact in these two islands there’s plenty of wind and sun and they are a good source of tidal power. A lot of windmills are constructed in different areas of the islands and big part of the population uses solar panels to generate electricity and warm up water. Plus another thing to keep in mind is that the constant burning of toxic gases will increase global warming.

From the economic point of view it would be insane. The main benefit from the islands is tourism. It’s because of the warm climate, the crystal clear beaches, the water sports and the beautiful horizon that thousands of people come to Fuerteventura and Lanzarote each year. Nobody will want to take a swim in black waters or make out an oil rig in the distance.

No matter from which point of view to look at it the project of prospecting oil in the Central Atlantic makes no sense. Some people think that if it’s not Spain who does it will be Morocco but the issue is not who does it but the magnitude of the disaster if oil rigs are installed in this part of the ocean.
The habitants of these two islands are totally opposed to this outrageous project but the entities responsible for it don’t listen.