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Putting Oil before People - Cameron in Kazakhstan

Putting Oil before People – Cameron in Kazakhstan

So David Cameron’s been cozying up to Kazakhstan’s autocratic president Nursultan Nazarbayev, talking up ‘a new relationship’ between Britain and Kazakhstan and claiming that trade between the two countries could total £85bn. Cameron did briefly mention a letter he received from Human Right’s Watch which detailed President Nazarbayev’s appalling record on democracy and human rights...
Signing of TAP agreement delayed as Aliyev tries to silence EU critics

Signing of TAP agreement delayed as Aliyev tries to silence EU critics

This morning’s planned announcement that the Trans-Adriatic Pipeline has been chosen as the final part of the mega gas pipeline that would run from the Caspian Sea to Italy1 has been overshadowed by controversy over when the agreement will be signed. The official announcement and a statement by the EU Commission are both expected today...

Europe’s Keystone XL? The Planned Mega-pipeline

Behind the closed doors of company boardrooms and government offices a mega-pipeline is being planned and promoted. This huge piece of infrastructure would carry gas over 4,000 kilometres from the Caspian Sea to central Europe, and in the process would lock Europe into gas dependency for at least the next 35 years. Such a project...
BP is planning a $40 bn pipeline and wants us to subsidise it

BP is planning a $40 bn pipeline and wants us to subsidise it

BP pushed for major subsidies at the European Bank for Reconstruction & Development (EBRD) AGM in Istanbul last weekend, while hyping the grand scale of its Euro-Caspian Mega Pipeline plans. Between speeches by Prime Ministers and sessions on “Supporting Growth Amidst Austerity”, oil companies revealed their intentions to spend $40 billion expanding Europe’s gas grid...
Even oil dictators need a social license to operate - Aliyev's cultural spending spree

Even oil dictators need a social license to operate – Aliyev’s cultural spending spree

Whether it’s BP’s sponsorship of the Tate galleries, Shell’s funding for the Southbank Centre or Tullow Oil’s controversial deals with Sunderland football club oil company sponsorship of the arts is a familiar phenomenon. But what about oil dictators? Do they also need a social license to operate? What kinds of institutions would they throw money...
The Work of Art in Critical Times - Open Day Symposium at Falmouth University, 8-9 March 2013

The Work of Art in Critical Times – Open Day Symposium at Falmouth University, 8-9 March 2013

Platform will be participating in a symposium at Falmouth University on The Work of Art in Critical Times. Held at the Falmouth campus on 8-9th March, the symposium will explore questions such as ‘how can the work of artists and curators be effective in critical times?’, ‘what are the various cultural, political and environmental values...
'Spatial Politics' event, Royal Geographical Society, 8 March 2013

‘Spatial Politics’ event, Royal Geographical Society, 8 March 2013

Radical geographer Doreen Massey – whom we hugely admire – gives a keynote speech at this event marking a new publication on her influence on theory, culture and politics. In the ‘Political Cultures’ workshop. Jane Trowell (Platform) is speaking alongside Dr Ian Shaw (Univ of Glasgow). This is at the RGS in central London, 11 –...
The price of gas: imports, repression and fuel poverty

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...
Oil company mega-profits and the dwindling public purse

Oil company mega-profits and the dwindling public purse

Yesterday, The Observer ran a story about George Osborne promising to crack down on multinationals avoiding tax in some of the world’s poorest countries. Anger over corporate tax avoidance at a time of massive cuts 
to public spending has placed the issue on the political agenda, especially since widespread popular protest sparked by UK Uncut. The money...
Making a Killing: Oil Companies, Tax Avoidance and Subsidies

Making a Killing: Oil Companies, Tax Avoidance and Subsidies

Oil company mega-profits are being made at the expense of the public purse, as youth centres shut, hospitals struggle and the queues at food banks grow. Companies like BP & Shell receive major government support including direct subsidies and military and diplomatic services, but seem to pay very small amounts of UK tax in comparison...
Top 12 journeys on The Oil Road - Travel writing around the Mediterranean & the Caspian

Top 12 journeys on The Oil Road – Travel writing around the Mediterranean & the Caspian

A heavily shortened version of this list by James Marriott and Mika Minio-Paluello first appeared in the Guardian in January 2012. In researching The Oil Road – Journeys from the Caspian Sea to the City of London, we feasted on others’ descriptions of the mountains and plains, villages and cities, open seas and jagged coastlines...
The Oil Road at the Mosaic Rooms, London, Thur 13th December

The Oil Road at the Mosaic Rooms, London, Thur 13th December

James Marriott and Mika Minio-Paluello will be discussing The Oil Road at the Mosaic Rooms in Kensington. 13th December, 7pm, free The Mosaic Rooms A. M. Qattan Foundation Tower House 226 Cromwell Road London SW5 0SW   In a unique journey from the oil fields of the Caspian Sea to the refineries and financial centres...