13 Greenpeace activists were seen rappelling off Portland’s tallest bridge in an effort to save the environment while many others occupied numerous kayaks in the sea serving the same cause.
The activists sprang into action after Royal Dutch Shell’s 380-foot Fennica icebreaker, which arrived in Portland for repairs the previous week, was seen making its way into the Arctic for oil drilling. A number of protestors, equipped with enough food and water for days, hung off the St. John’s Bridge in order to prevent the vessel from moving forward and contaminating the ocean.
The environmental group had hoped the time they spent protesting would act as a second chance for the Obama administration to rethink its decision of granting Shell permission of limited exploratory drilling in the sea.
“Every second we stop Shell counts. The brave climbers here in Portland are now what stand between Shell and Arctic oil. This is President Obama’s last chance to wake up and realize the disaster that could happen on his watch,” said Annie Leonard, executive director of Greenpeace, United States.
“Greenpeace prioritizes safety above all else and rappelling from a bridge is a walk in the park compared to the risks that we’ll face if we continue the climate change trajectory we’re on now.”
Sadly, the protest ended in vain as law enforcement agencies removed activists from the bridge. They did not bother to clear all 13 off the rappellers, but instead moved out just as many were needed to allow Fennica to pass under the bridge.
Oil spill prevention has been one of the most important and widely run campaigns by the Greenpeace organization, and falls under its Save the Arctic campaign.