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Iranian Oil Workers Strike Update

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 16/08/2021 - 4:10am in

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oil, Iran, strikes

image/jpeg iconprotest-organising-council-11.jpg

52 days have gone by since the start of the strike, which began when thousands of Iranian oil workers downed tools on 19 June and walked off oilfields across Iran. The Council for Organising Protests by Oil Contract Workers has issued 11 statements so far. In our previous article we published parts of their first 6 statements (see leftcom.org) as well as giving a short explanation of their full context.

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Iranian Oil and Petrochemical Workers' Strikes Go On

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 16/08/2021 - 4:00am in

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oil, Iran, strikes

image/jpeg iconprotest-organising-council-7.jpg

Since Saturday, 19 June, thousands of workers at oil and gas projects and petrochemical plants have been on strike across the country in several provinces. They are coordinating their action under the title of Strike Campaign 1400, which refers to the current year in the Iranian calendar. The number of industrial centres that have participated in this strike is reported to have reached more than 100 units in 10 provinces and the number of workers on strike has passed 105,000. Significantly, there has been very little news coverage of these massive strikes, both in the domestic and foreign media but the strikes are still going on as we write.

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Donziger: Why am I the one locked up and not Chevron?Human rights lawyer facing prison for holding oil giant to account talks about his Kafkaesque case.

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 13/08/2021 - 3:09am in

Calling in to the FlashPoints News studio from his new New York home, where he is currently under house arrest, attorney Steven Donziger talks about his Kafkaesque case. This outrageous tale of oil, power, corruption, corporate murder and ecocide ... READ MORE

I will not let them put Steven Donziger behind bars without raising hellPalast and supporters of the rights lawyer speak at the #FreeDonziger rally in LA

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Sun, 08/08/2021 - 12:25am in

This is the first ever case in which we have a corporation acting as a criminal prosecutor — a prosecution that is blatant retaliation for a successful lawsuit against them. This, by itself, is deeply, deeply, dangerous. And if you think I take this personally ... READ MORE

Donziger: Facing Prison for Fighting ChevronRights Attorney Pays Price for Defending Indigenous in Ecuador Poisoned by Oil

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Fri, 06/08/2021 - 5:08pm in

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articles, oil, Ecuador

Steven Donziger, a US attorney, classmate of Barack Obama at Harvard law, gave up everything—literally everything—to take on the case. It’s been a decade, and Chevron still hasn’t paid a dime. But Donziger has paid big time: For the last two years, he’s been under house arrest, longer than any... READ MORE

Haiti: The Trail of Blood That Leads Back to The U.S.

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Thu, 15/07/2021 - 4:41am in

Critical Hour hosts Garland Nixon and Wilmer Leon talk to Palast about the recent assassination of Haiti’s president, Jovenel Moïse, and the trail of blood that leads back to the United States. The trio also discuss the socioeconomic background against which this murder occurred, and how the economy of this mineral and agriculturally rich Caribbean nation has been systematically... READ MORE

Colombian Assassins Practiced Long Before Haiti HitMercenaries who killed Jovenel Moïse attempted to murder Hugo Chavez

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Sat, 10/07/2021 - 8:43pm in

The U.S. media is aghast that Colombian mercenaries were hired to assassinate Haiti’s president, but this is the same operation that was hired by a U.S. company to murder Hugo Chavez — a story which got ... READ MORE

Locally Grown Food Could Have a Big Impact in Alaska

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Wed, 07/07/2021 - 6:00pm in

Garden variety

In many of Alaska’s rural Native communities, the cost of food is outrageous. For instance, in the Athabascan village of Rampart, groceries are flown in from Fairbanks at a surcharge of 49 cents per pound. Now, an initiative aims to bolster local food production by teaching traditional growing practices that can be carried out in carbon-neutral greenhouses.

Eva Dawn Burk is an Indigenous woman who researches the links between health and traditional food practices. To launch the initiative, she partnered with Calypso Farm and Ecology Center near Fairbanks. It has two components. The first is educational, in which Indigenous youth travel to Calypso to learn about traditional approaches to agriculture. The second is infrastructural — Burk works with the local tribal offices where the youth live to help them build on-site biomass-powered greenhouses. Since the growing season in many parts of Alaska is less than 100 days, the greenhouses could give these communities a real shot at achieving food sovereignty. 

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The first greenhouse is currently being constructed in Nenana, Burk’s hometown. Scheduled to be finished next year, residents are already looking forward to fresh produce at a fraction of current prices. “I can’t wait. I’m very excited,” said one Nenana resident. “When I was growing up, we were lucky to get an orange.” 

Read more at High Country News

Leak scandal

Talk about silent killers: Across the U.S., climate-changing methane leaks into the air from an estimated three million abandoned oil and natural gas wells. Far more potent than carbon dioxide, methane is a heat-trapping greenhouse gas, atmospheric concentrations of which rose more sharply last year than at any time since measurements began in 1983.

oilCredit: Don Barrett / Flickr

Curtis Shuck, a former oil and gas executive, started the Well Done Foundation to plug up the problem. Well Done fills orphaned fossil fuel wells with cement to trap their methane underground. So far they’ve capped seven wells, each of them a significant emitter of methane. (One Montana well alone emitted as much each year as 600 cars, and it had been leaking for three decades.) 

Filling wells doesn’t come cheap — each project costs about $30,000. So far this funding has come through private donations, but Shuck sees a big opportunity for oil companies wanting to change the narrative. “This is your wake-up call. This ship is sailing,” he says to his former fossil fuel executives. “We should at least strive to be better today than we were yesterday.”

Read more at the Washington Post

‘The original people of this land’

Canada Day, observed on July 1, was canceled in cities across the country this year following the tragic discovery of the remains of Indigenous children in hundreds of mass graves. But that doesn’t mean that no one turned out to show their pride: in many places, thousands of Indigenous Peoples “organized, gathered, spoke, sang, danced, drummed, marched, rallied, held ceremony, conducted work, and as Gitxsan journalist Angela Sterritt tweeted on the day, ‘took the country back,’” according to IndigiNews.

“It was a very spiritual and overwhelming experience,” said Sekawnee Baker of the Squamish and Tla’amin Nations. “I’m doing what the Ancestors want me to do. I feel like I’m walking in their steps and they’re giving me the power to continue.” The vivid, uplifting photos, taken by independent filmmaker and photographer Moses Latigo Opong, are reason enough alone to check out the story.

Read more at IndigiNews

The post Locally Grown Food Could Have a Big Impact in Alaska appeared first on Reasons to be Cheerful.

Gas Panics and the Colonial Pipeline Cybersecurity Breach

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Tue, 18/05/2021 - 9:01pm in

In this episode, Natalia, Niki, and Neil discuss the gas panic triggered by the recent cybersecurity breach at Colonial Pipeline....

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Oil Spots

Published by Anonymous (not verified) on Mon, 26/04/2021 - 7:51pm in

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culture, oil

The Science Museum’s new exhibition on climate breakdown is funded by an oil company. What could possibly go wrong?

By George Monbiot, published in the Guardian 21st April 2021

Taking money from fossil fuel companies today is like taking money from tobacco firms in the 1990s. The damage public institutions inflict on themselves by receiving this sponsorship exceeds any benefits. Just as their hands were once stained with nicotine, now they are stained with oil. The tobacco experience suggests that it can take many years to expunge these damn’d spots and restore their reputations.

This is the position in which the Science Museum now finds itself. It appears to have learned nothing from the reputational harm it caused itself by accepting money from the oil companies BP and Equinor. Last week it revealed that Shell was funding – wait for it – its new exhibition on climate breakdown.

Although many other great institutions – such as the National Galleries in London and Scotland, the Tate Galleries, the National Theatre, the Royal Shakespeare Company, the Southbank Centre, the American Museum of Natural History and the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam – have cut their ties with fossil fuel industries, the Science Museum seems determined to tar and feather itself. Its director, Sir Ian Blatchford, told journalists: “Even if the Science Museum were lavishly publicly funded I would still want to have sponsorship from the oil companies.” Something tells me this will not age well.

The exhibition, called Our Future Planet, emphasises the technologies that might capture the carbon dioxide from burning fossil fuels, or extract it from the air once it has been released. The Science Museum tells me that Shell had no influence over its design or content. I believe it, but to my eye the exhibition aligns neatly with oil company agendas. For years, oil firms have sought to delay the retirement of their reserves for as long as possible by emphasising technofixes. If carbon dioxide can be captured, this could buy time in which their discovery and drilling, landgrabs and leaks, pollution and profits can continue for longer than society might otherwise permit.

As Culture Unstained (which seeks to bring oil sponsorship to an end) points out, most of the technologies the exhibition promotes are either speculative, extremely expensive or, despite ample opportunity, simply not happening. For example, carbon capture and storage (CCS) – extracting carbon from the exhaust gases of power stations, then piping it into geological formations – has been noisily promoted as a leading solution for 20 years. But so far only 26 plants of any kind are using it, and 22 of these are rigs using the CO2 they pump underground to drive more oil out of the rocks (a process called enhanced oil recovery).

The commitments to CCS in Shell’s latest annual report are vague and generic. Yet many of its promises to cut net emissions rely on a combination of this technology and offsets. While capture technologies are generally failing to materialise, the scale of the necessary carbon cuts means that offsetting emissions is no longer viable. We need both to maximise the retirement of fossil fuels and maximise the drawing down of carbon, preferably through the rewilding of ecosystems. One is not a substitute for the other.

Yes, we should explore any technologies that might help to prevent climate breakdown. But we should not allow them to be used as greenwash. Unless fossil fuel companies retire their reserves at a rate commensurate with preventing more than 1.5C of heating, they remain a lethal threat to human wellbeing and the survival of other lifeforms. So far, none of them, even on paper, have plans compatible with preventing more than 2C of heating, let alone 1.5C. Shell’s programme was criticised by environmental groups last week as being hazy and halfhearted.

The company argues, correctly, that its targets are conditional on being “in step with society”. Otherwise it “will be trying to sell products that our customers do not want”. But by producing ads that exaggerate its commitment to reducing emissions, it seeks to assuage public opinion and, I believe, delay the demand for a transition from fossil fuels. In my view, the exhibition at the Science Museum has the same effect.

Worse still, while Shell has cut its ties with some lobby groups, it is still a member of several, such as the Consumer Energy Alliance and the Australian Petroleum Production & Exploration Association, which have sought to stymie climate policies. It hopes that much of its future profit will come from the rising production of plastics. Last year, the American Chemistry Council, to which Shell also belongs, lobbied for trade rules that would rip down Kenya’s strict measures on single-use plastic, and force the country to keep accepting plastic waste from other nations. It wanted to turn Kenya into “a hub for supplying US-made chemicals and plastics to other markets in Africa”.

When I challenged the museum, it pointed me to an article by Blatchford, in which he argued, “we believe the right approach is to engage, debate and challenge companies … to do more to make the global economy less carbon intensive.” So do I. But how does accepting their funding help? It doesn’t exactly enhance your power, does it? “Do what we say or we won’t take your money any more.”

This, I believe, is a zero-sum game. The credibility that Shell might gain from its association with the Science Museum is credibility the Science Museum loses. What Shell seeks, as its CEO admits, is “a strong societal licence to operate”. By sponsoring august cultural institutions, oil companies hope to normalise an ecocidal business model. In doing so, they contaminate anyone foolish enough to take their money.

www.monbiot.com

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