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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...

Paradigm shift in the House of the North – reflecting on ‘The Sky’s Limit’

  I’m trudging towards the top of Am Faochagach following my dear friend Greg Muttitt, who was for a long time central to Platform and is now part of the wider family. The smooth crest of this mountain rises like a whale’s back. Its lack of crags must have led to its name – Am...

The changing wind – shedding the carbon skin

  I am cramming chocolate into your mouth. I feel the dampness of your lips against my fingertips and see the brown squares tumble into the darkness. It takes seconds to complete the task, but the time draws out, slows down. All around is mayhem. The wind makes the shrouds howl. The sound thrusts a...

A manifesto for Energy beyond Neoliberalism

We’ve written a manifesto titled Energy beyond Neoliberalism: “This is a call for energy democracy. Not energy security or energy separation. A survivable and just energy future means breaking the grip of elite interests on our energy systems, ending dependency, increasing autonomy, building diverse power structures through which we can hold one another to account,...

Shell’s climate marketing tricks

Have you seen all these new Shell ads? Billboards on high streets and tube stations celebrate Shell as a champion of climate action and “keeping-the-lights-on”. When she’s your age What’s the way to keep the lights on into 2050? Burn the rest of the world’s fossil fuels, of course. And look, she’s even got a...

Offshore: Iran, BP, Algeria & Boris Island

“No you can’t get through down there. They’ve got a full set of anti-terrorist police. Machine guns and all. They’ll jump out at you if you go beyond that fence. Mind you, it helps keep the crime down in the village”. The tall man with white hair straggling out from under his black hat and...

Human rights activist and Platform ally Rasul Jafarov arrested in Azerbaijan

Democracy activist and Platform ally, Rasul Jafarov, was arrested and detained in Baku over the weekend. Rasul has been charged with tax evasion, illegal entrepreneurship and power abuse. These are the same falsified charges that saw independent Azeri election monitor Anar Mammadli jailed for 5.5 years. Rasul’s arrest comes shortly after the prominent human rights...

Gas grabs and 5 questions to power at the Caspian Corridor Conference

The Euro Caspian Mega Pipeline is a massive infrastructure system designed to suck gas out of the Caspian into Western Europe. Construction of the pipeline involves politics and finance as much as it does concrete building materials,  and the conference I’m about to go to is one in a series of events attempting to make...

Reinforcing Dictatorships – Britain’s Gas Grab and Human Rights Abuses in Algeria

UK foreign policy aims to lock North African natural gas into the European and British grids and is heavily influenced by arms and fossil fuel interests. As a result, the Conservative government has courted the Algerian regime and supported arms sales between British companies and Algeria as well as encouraging an expanded role for BP....

The price of gas: imports, repression and fuel poverty

In a deplorable attack on the right to protest energy giant EDF is attempting to sue 21 activists for £5mn in a civil action. The No Dash for Gas campaigners occupied West Burton gas power station for 7 days by scaling two of the three 91m high cooling towers, brave people. They are going to...

The Oil Road – reviews, interviews and analysis

 The Oil Road has been getting an incredible response from the press, blogs and activists alike. We’ve cobbled together a selection of the best quotes from reviews with links to  the full articles. “An elegantly written travel book…a distinctive blend of travelogue, reportage and history…will make you think the next time you fill the tank”...

A secret military subsidy – pirates and oil corps

New Internationalist featured a blog from Platform on our new briefing A Secret Subsidy: Oil companies, the Navy and the response to piracy. Here’s what we wrote: This week the Combating Piracy Conference has been taking place in London, behind closed doors. This industry-organised event brings together representatives from European Union, NATO and oil and...