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ENVIRONMENTAL activists blockaded BP’s London headquarters today ahead of the energy giant’s annual general meeting, demanding it end exploration for new oil and gas drilling.
Campaign group Greenpeace placed large containers at every entrance to the offices in the early hours, with volunteers inside and on top of them, making removal hazardous.
The containers weigh several tons each and prevented staff from entering the building. Greenpeace volunteers also abseiled down the side of the building.
The containers are plastered with pictures from photographer Gideon Mendel’s Drowning World project, which graphically illustrates the impact of climate change on people around the world.
Despite the government’s declaration of a climate emergency at the instigation of Labour, BP continues to explore new sources of oil and gas, including in the North Sea.
Police cleared the area of pedestrians but there were no arrests.
Greenpeace said it intends to maintain the blockade for a week.
Paul Morozzo, one of the volunteers in the containers, said: “We’re shutting down BP’s HQ because ‘business as usual’ is just not an option.
“BP is fuelling a climate emergency that threatens millions of lives and the future of the living world.
“The science is clear: we must stop searching for new oil and gas if we want a liveable planet. BP must clean up or clear out.
“For too long BP and the oil industry have paid lip service to climate action while lying and lobbying against it behind the scenes and spending billions scouring the world for more oil and gas.
“The reality is that BP’s whole business plan is a heavy bet against our hopes to avoid a climate catastrophe — and must change.”
Greenpeace said that BP was outspending other oil giants on lobbying campaigns against climate action and spent $16 billion (£12.6bn) adding to its oil and gas reserves in 2018.
A BP worker said: “We don't know what’s happening. I’m thinking to go home because it will take the police a while to get the protesters abseiling off the building.”
An information technology worker said: “I’ve been told to go home.”
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