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BP offshore drilling is offside with its new climate policy

BP shareholders just overwhelmingly voted to adopt the climate emissions targets of the Paris Agreement, throwing the corporation’s Nova Scotia offshore drilling operations into question. The resolution passed decisively with 99.14 per cent support.

“The Nova Scotia government is still begging for oil companies to come here. But clearly even BP is now questioning its priorities,” says Marion Moore with the Campaign to Protect Offshore Nova Scotia (CPONS) and the South Shore Chapter of the Council of Canadians. “BP shareholders voting to meet the Paris Agreement climate targets highlights the need for a full, independent public inquiry into offshore drilling.”

Offshore drilling poses serious risks to marine ecosystems, the climate, tourism, fisheries, and coastal communities, with the rewards going to large corporations like BP.

Just last month, the federal government announced that it is banning offshore drilling in protected areas. This Council of Canadians, CPONS, and other organizations are calling for a halt to offshore drilling in protected areas and highlighting concerns that marine protected areas did not apply to the oil and gas industry.

“BP’s Nova Scotia offshore drilling is incompatible with the Paris Agreement and the company  no longer even has a mandate from its shareholders to continue,” says Dylan Penner, Climate and Social Justice Campaigner with the Council of Canadians. “More and more people are recognizing that offshore drilling is not worth the risk. BP has an obligation to listen to its shareholders and impacted communities and stop its offshore drilling.”

The BP shareholder vote takes place in the context of growing opposition to offshore drilling, including the Council’s petition that already has over 60,000 signatures.

The South Shore chapter of the Council of Canadians is also supporting a Green New Deal town hall on Thursday, May 23, at 6:30pm (LCLC Multi-Purpose Room, 135 North Park St, Bridgewater, NS). The event is one of over 150 town halls taking place from coast-to-coast-to-coast to help shape the vision for an ambitious Green New Deal for Canada to tackle the climate crisis.