“I experience it in every community [companies splitting communities]. It’s the same story whether it’s Erris (Co. Mayo), Leitrim, whether it’s the people threatened by fracking now; it’s exactly the same story. The same psychological war-fare is being got ready for them ..... God forgive companies for what they do to communities.”
I'm just back from the Shell to Sea campsite in Mayo. I have to say the campaign over there is one of the most inspiring things I have ever seen. Shell and their "security" (mercenaries) have taken over that part of Mayo, and these protesters are all that is standing in the way of Shell raping our country of e600bn of gas, destroying some truly breathtaking scenery and putting a lot of lives at risk with untried and unsafe processing techniques.
However the campaign may be portrayed in the media, the protesters there are truly committed and peaceful activists who are literally giving years of their lives to stopping this disastrous project. The camp is a series of tents in a seemingly uninhabitable bog, where a low level of electricity is generated through their own ingenuity by harnessing windpower. Despite the condidtions they have made the camp a comfortable place to live and there is a tremenduous atmosphere and community in the camp; all chores are shared and drugs are completely prohibited.
Numbers at the camp vary, this weekend there were about twenty or so, but new volunteers are always welcome. The next few weeks are crucial, as the final leg of the project is about to begin, where Shell rips up thousands of tons of pristine (and protected) bog to link up the onland refinery with the off-shore pipe. This cause is at the core of how this country is being bullied. Ireland getting a fair share of this gas would make the bailout money look like small change, but once this project is complete it will be virtually impossible to re-negotiate the terms. We need to get hundreds of people down there to stop the project. If you are not working at the moment, why not give a few days to stay at the camp and have a cheap holiday? Join the Shell to Sea campaign and find out how to get involved. I will be going back down soon, anyone that wants to come with me please get in touch.