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The Invisible Machine – a gas pipeline in the Caucasus and a handshake in No10

The Invisible Machine – a gas pipeline in the Caucasus and a handshake in No10

On the evening of Thursday 26th April 2018, it was warm and sunny in London. President Ilham Aliyev strode down Downing Street and was met by Prime Minister Theresa May with smile and a handshake. They posed for the cameras on the red carpet outside No 10 and then retired inside. A short formal chat...
Aliyev re-elected as President for another 7 years – the chain of oil autocracy that binds Azerbaijan

Aliyev re-elected as President for another 7 years – the chain of oil autocracy that binds Azerbaijan

On 18th April Ilham Aliyev will be inaugurated for the fourth time as President of Azerbaijan. His re-election comes as no surprise. It is so predictable that it barely counted as ‘news’ and consequently got next to no coverage in the international media. Originally the election was scheduled for 17th October, but at nine weeks...
Win! Mayor of London and More Councils Back Divestment

Win! Mayor of London and More Councils Back Divestment

Yesterday, the Mayor of London joined the divestment movement. Sadiq Khan announced plans to divest the London Pension Fund from fossil fuels, calling on other London boroughs to do the same. We are seeing a wave of divestment pledges across the capital. Lambeth and Islington Labour have announced divestment commitments in their manifestos. With some local...
The slow dismantling the house of oil - The Gulbenkian Foundation divests

The slow dismantling the house of oil – The Gulbenkian Foundation divests

Quite unexpected comes remarkable news! Lucy Neal, a long-term part of the Platform family, e-mails out of the blue, forwarding an article from the Algarve Daily News, published on 1st February in southern Portugal. The headline reads: ‘Gulbenkian Foundation gets out of the oil business’ That truly is unexpected. Lucy had not foreseen this coming...
La Zad puts down roots – sensing the future

La Zad puts down roots – sensing the future

We’re in the middle of the crowd. Standing some way back from the stage, watching transfixed and elated at the performance of Orchestre Tout Puissant Marcel Duchamp. Two trombones, two drummers, two marimbas, two electric guitars, two cellos and five other musicians blast out such a blissful riot of sound that our souls sail above...
Communal Memory - the power of community to resist Shell in Nigeria

Communal Memory – the power of community to resist Shell in Nigeria

I’m holding in my hands a report published by Amnesty International in November last year – ‘A Criminal Enterprise? Shell’s involvement in human rights violations in Nigeria in the 1990s’. It analyses in forensic detail exactly how much Shell staff knew about, and were involved in supporting, the actions by the Nigerian military taken against...
In memoriam Ed Ross – in honour of one who honoured others

In memoriam Ed Ross – in honour of one who honoured others

  A Robin sings among the bare branches of the Ash trees. A small crowd is gathered in a corner of Highgate Cemetery to commit the ashes of Ed Ross to the earth. A few hundred yards away, obscured by the gravestones and tree trunks, is the imposing bust of Karl Marx. Ed died suddenly...
Victory at La ZAD ! – inspirational resistance through community

Victory at La ZAD ! – inspirational resistance through community

The people of Notres Dame des Landes have won! The people of La ZAD have won! The airport that the French state have tried to build for 50 years has been defeated! On 17th January President Macron decreed that the Nantes International airport, similar in size to Heathrow, would not go ahead after half a...
Avebury and the infrastructure of community

Avebury and the infrastructure of community

Over the Winter Break I walked at Avebury in Wiltshire with Nick Robins, a long term Platformer, who’s worked on several projects and was a Trustee. We had the chance to reflect on time and community. The soft whale back curve of the Ridgeway rose to the left, its skyline punctuated by barrows ringed with...
Councils: Fuelling the Fire

Councils: Fuelling the Fire

Councils: Fuelling the Fire  reveals that UK councils invest £16.1 billion of their workers’ pensions into companies that extract coal, oil and gas, fueling dangerous climate change. Download the report The report uncovers: Councils invest £16.1 billion of pensions into fossil fuel companies out of a total of £289.9 billion, new data reveals No significant...
Revealed: UK council pensions are banking £16.1 billion on climate disaster

Revealed: UK council pensions are banking £16.1 billion on climate disaster

Today we’re releasing new data analysis showing that UK councils invest £16.1 billion in fossil fuel corporations through their workers’ pensions. These investments are bankrolling the companies most responsible for climate change, like Shell and BP. The councils with the biggest investments in fossil fuels – Manchester, Galloway & Dumfries, Hammersmith & Fulham, and Torfaen...
EU urged to honour Paris Agreement, withdraw support for gas mega-pipeline

EU urged to honour Paris Agreement, withdraw support for gas mega-pipeline

Brussels, Belgium — In an open letter released today, climate scientists, indigenous leaders, environmental and social justice groups, actors and artists call on the European Union to immediately withdraw its support for a gas mega-pipeline that would ‘destroy Europe’s climate targets’. While European leaders criticised the United States for pulling out of the Paris Agreement,...