Thousands across SA protest against Shell’s planned seismic survey

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The planned seismic survey by the oil giant Shell along the Eastern Cape Wild Coast continues to face huge opposition from the communities along the affected area and the wider public despite the High Court dismissing an urgent application for an interim interdict against the survey on Friday.

Those opposing the plan by Shell took to the beaches and the street on Sunday.

More than 60 protests against the seismic survey took place at venues along the South African coast from Richards Bay in KwaZulu-Natal to Port Nolloth on the west coast. There was also a protest in Gauteng.

Locals from Port St John’s are very concerned about the effect on the marine ecosystem which is vital to their economy and lifestyle.

Activists gather in Cape Town and in Knysna to protest against oil giant Shell’s plans to conduct a seismic survey. SABC News reporter Vanessa Poonah reports:

In East London, there was much talk about the lack of research into the environmental effect of seismic surveys.

In Gauteng, the protesters shut down a Shell-branded fuel station.

“This is really a call for further escalation of actions. We will shut down their offices, we shut it down on Wednesday, we will shut it down in the coming weeks. And now we expand our activities to shell’s partners, Hoskings Consolidated Investment, investment oil and gas run by Jonny…if legal groups want to escalate this thing to the constitutional court we will support them we will fundraise all their legal expenses and we will try to get this escalated,” says Extinction Rebellion South Africa activist, Malik Dasoo.

Shell says the company is very aware of the public’s sentiment and will continue to engage with communities. Chairperson of Shell Companies SA, Hloniphizwe Mtolo says they are taking the environment very seriously.

“We take the environment very very seriously as an organisation and it is very close and dear to our operations and we will not knowingly do harm to the environment”

The High Court in Makhanda is also due to decide this week to hear another application for an interdict against the seismic surveys that were filed last week.