Mae Hank and Faith Gemmill- Fredson made the journey from Alaska to attend the meeting. On Saturday they participated in the direct action in the “Seattle Paddle” oil rig actions before arriving in the Hague for the meeting. They will continue their journey to Shell’s investors meeting in London to continue to raise her concerns and to meet with other communities impacted by Shell’s negligences.
“My concerns with Shell remain the same year after year, they cannot ensure any compensation to communities in the likely event of a catastrophe if they are granted the license to go ahead with their reckless pursuit of the Arctic,” said Mae Hank. “Shell’s past actions in 2012 shows how Shell takes lightly the high risk of drilling in our Chukchi sea. We have seen one accident after another, like the loss of barges during a high winter storm. We cannot allow offshore drilling in our most sacred hunting grounds. The ocean is our ancestral grounds where we have hunted and gathered for thousands of years. The ocean is the future of our community as well as the source of our food security, cultural and religious practices — all based on the bow head whale. With a record like this Shell expects us to entrust the company with the future of our way of life?”
Shell made announcements to begin operations in the tar sands in September, claiming that carbon capture storage technology would make tar sands extraction an ‘acceptable’ practice.
“The Shell board seemed completely incoherent and confused. On one hand they are celebrating their commitment to climate action and on the other continuing to insist on extracting tar sands in Alberta and being adamant on moving into the Arctic despite the community and scientific consensus that these actions will condemn the global community to catastrophic climate change” commented Suzanne Dhaliwal, director of the UK Tar Sands Network. “Listening to the board today I was convinced more than ever that this company is not to be trusted with our collective energy future and we cannot stand by and watch them make decisions that will commit us to climate suicide.”