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Photo essay: Faces of offshore resistance

Why is offshore drilling not worth the risk? Who carries these risks? Who is fighting back against the offshore industry?

This photo series highlights a number of community activists fighting to protect their homes, coastal communities, fisheries, tourism, and cultural history from the harms of offshore drilling.

Robert van Waarden, the photographer behind the Along the Pipeline photo project about the Energy East resistance, helped us put a face and a voice to the opposition, meeting people in their home communities and hearing what offshore drilling might mean for them and why they’re standing up. The people highlighted include leaders from the fishing community, the Mi’kmaq Nation, social justice community activists, a tourism operator, and a local mayor.

Read the interviews by clicking the photos below:


Kayaker photo credit: Gavin Hatheway. All other photos, credit: Robert van Waarden.

Opposing offshore drilling is just one piece of the ‘keep it in the ground’ movement calling for no more new fossil fuel development or infrastructure combined with investment in a just transition for workers and our economy on a global scale.

Bold action must be taken in order to turn the tide, and we are demanding just that of our leaders. We need to knit all the climate solutions we know into a more compelling and tangible vision. We need to call more loudly than ever for funding for renewables, energy efficiency, health, education, ecological agriculture, and other low carbon sectors. We need to call for worker retraining, clean up of abandoned oil projects, making our cities walkable, bikeable & transit-friendly, and upholding Indigenous rights. We need to call for a Green New Deal as the progressive wing of the U.S. Democrats, amongst many others, are calling for these days.