The Lie of the Land - Hunting The Oil Machine in Inverness

The Lie of the Land – Hunting The Oil Machine in Inverness

The words of Sir David King, head of the Climate Crisis Advisory Group, haunt me. Speaking at the launch of The Oil Machine film, he explained his view on what has been taking place since 2019. “What we have experienced in the last three years is a series of extreme weather events around the world,...
Enough is Enough! - Medway's resistance to an unjust transition.

Enough is Enough! – Medway’s resistance to an unjust transition.

  Down the canyon of Chatham High Street comes the march. Banner of Medway Trades Council proudly to the fore. Chants and shouts echoing off the shopfronts and the buildings above. “Enough is Enough! Enough is Enough!” Past the pound shops and the charity shops. Past the boarded up windows and the off licenses. Through...
Who Owns the Wind?  – the promise of a publicly owned renewable energy system

Who Owns the Wind? – the promise of a publicly owned renewable energy system

The North Westerly gale billows and shakes the heavy white pvc of the marquee on the Portsoy harbourside, Aberdeenshire. Festival goers drift from stall to stall, under the pallid light of sun through plastic, dithering over the t-towels and pots of honey. At one end of the tent, a wall is taken up by a...
'Oil is the poison: Action is the antidote' – sixteen days in the movement to end fossil fuels

‘Oil is the poison: Action is the antidote’ – sixteen days in the movement to end fossil fuels

At 8.25 on Friday 15th April, as the rush hour traffic poured off the M4 at Chiswick, four activists stepped out in front of an Eddie Stobart oil tanker. Two held up a banner declaring ‘Just Stop Oil’ whilst two others disabled the braking system and clambered up onto the back of the tanker. Passing...
Tectonic shifts – the energy crisis and the leap beyond - The Economic War, part 4

Tectonic shifts – the energy crisis and the leap beyond – The Economic War, part 4

Shell declares it may go back into Cambo and the oilfield’s exploration license is extended by two years. The British government pushes for renewed drilling in the UK North Sea. There is public outcry at the Chancellor’s failure to defend households from the attack on living standards driven by price inflation. The Russian government announces...
Time to kick Oil out of Football? – The Economic War, part 3

Time to kick Oil out of Football? – The Economic War, part 3

Roman Abramovich under sanctions! Chelsea up for sale! Scandal engulfs Everton FC as a key donor Alisher Usmanov is added to the UK government’s list of ‘named Oligarchs’. The Economic War has opened a new front on the pitch. Football is pulled into the Russian invasion of Ukraine just as Western corporations and the oil...
Hail to the dockworkers! A Tale of Three Tankers - The Economic War, part 2

Hail to the dockworkers! A Tale of Three Tankers – The Economic War, part 2

You can track them still on MarineTraffic.com … the MV Seacod, the MV Boris Vilkitsky and the MV Pearl. Three ghost ships of the energy system, the spirits of the Economic War. All three of these vessels broke out of the fog that normally swathes the constant trade in oil and gas. All three neared...
The Guns of Economic War – unpicking the decisions by BP to sell out of Russia

The Guns of Economic War – unpicking the decisions by BP to sell out of Russia

Far from the terrifying realities of the shelling of civilians in Kyiv, Kharkiv and other Ukrainian cities, far from the desperation of women and children trying to board trains for Poland, far from the sickening din of armour in the streets, the guns the economic war are firing. The bravery of Ukrainian citizens in resisting...
Fuel poverty and Shell profits – who possesses the gas system?

Fuel poverty and Shell profits – who possesses the gas system?

Standing in the front benches of the Opposition in the House of Commons, Rachel Reeves, Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, declared “Citizens Advice have said they have seen a record number of people in January … Only today Shell announced that their profits had quadrupled to 20 billion dollars. They described the results as momentous,...
What the Gas Price hike means – the Tales of Two Cities

What the Gas Price hike means – the Tales of Two Cities

Hot on the heels of the Petrol Panic comes the Gas Price Panic and the Electricity Price Panic – my head spins as I try to take in each of these fossil fuel driven convulsions. It is worth the effort to unpick this ball of yarn and lay out the tale it reveals. It is...
Profiting from the Panic – how to use a squeeze in the oil flow to financial advantage

Profiting from the Panic – how to use a squeeze in the oil flow to financial advantage

Petrol Panic grips the nation. A second week of fuel shortages on the forecourts threatens to hobble the economy, or at least erode support for the Tories in their heartlands and overshadow the Conservative Party Conference. Will queues at the petrol pumps in Manchester crowd the prime minister’s show? The Shell stations in Bolton were...
Crises, North Sea Oil and Covid-19

Crises, North Sea Oil and Covid-19

Last month I spoke on behalf of Platform at an online event on the theme of ‘People Over Profit and Covid-19’ organised by our collaborators Kate and Ryan at Friends of the Earth Scotland. It was a really engaging event with two other speakers followed by breakout groups and a wider discussion afterwards. I looked...