Oil and Gas Contracts in Portugal: 6 Left in the Ground, 9 to go

Climáximo, Portuguese climate justice movement fighting against fossil fuel exploration and extraction in Portugal and anywhere else in the world, celebrates the recent cancellation of the Portfuel and Repsol/Partex contracts in Algarve but highlights that there are more 9 fossil fuel contracts, onshore and offshore, in Batalha, in Pombal, and all over the Atlantic coast from Porto until Sagres. All of these contracts need to be canceled and Portugal should advance to a fossil-free future.20090864

These cancellations are a fruit of continuous and determined struggle by the various local movements, in Algarve and in several other places of the country, which clearly demonstrated the contradiction between fossil fuel projects and the lives and sustenance economy of the local populations together with the fight against global climate change. Climáximo has been always and will continue to be on the side of the cancellation of all these irrational concessions.

The government’s decision is positive, but cannot be used to justify the other concessions: we are well aware of the power of the corporations behind these catastrophic concessions, but the government’s duty should be to defend the populations who elected them. Hence, the remaining contracts in Alentejo coast (offshore), zona Oeste (offshore) and in Beira Litoral (onshore). Mobilizations will be crucial to put these processes on the right track.

Last November in COP-22, Marrakesh, the Prime Minister António Costa declared that Portugal would be carbon neutral by 2050. This simply means that there cannot be any fossil fuel exploitation in this country. Being good words, it is also too far fetched in its time scale: the carbon budget to limit global warming by 2ºC implies a rapid transition to take place in the following two decades. Climáximo will do everything it takes to press for a rapid and just transition, and to disrupt the suicidal logic of the fossil fuel industry which is based on the extractivist capitalism that exploits the people and the planet simultaneously.

6 contracts are gone, now it’s time for the other 9 !

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