Gluaiseacht Submission on Nexen exploration well

Minister Richard Bruton,

We request that you reject the application from Nexen Petroleum UK Ltd (CNOOC) to drill an exploration well at Iolar on Frontier Exploration Licence FEL3/18.

There is a saying “Luíonn uatha ar iolar” – The few oppress the many

And if you give this permission to CNOOC and Exxon Mobil that is what you will be causing. Further oppression of many people who will suffer the increasing effects of climate change for the benefits of the few.

These two companies are both listed in a Climate Accountability Institute report of the 100 companies that have been the source of more than 70% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions since 1988 [1].

When you became Minister for Climate Action you said that we would require “a revolution in how we live” well this is a test for you, to see if they were just nice words or is climate change something that you actually believe in and can act bravely on.

You have also said that  “We need to step-up our response to climate disruption. The window for opportunity is closing. The decisions we take now will define the next century,”

One of these important decisions is to stop developing new sources of fossil fuel.   The consequence of this decision could be still in the atmosphere in 200 years time, in the year 2219 and could be still causing climate disruption then.

It will be extra hard for countries who have a history of benefiting financially from oil and gas  developed in there territory to cease exploration and development of fossil fuels. But fortunately (due to previous dodgy deals) Ireland has only minimally benefitted from any gas development in its territory.

As an example of this in November when Vermilion took over as operator of the Corrib, they declared that “we do not expect to pay income taxes related to cash flows generated from the Corrib project”[2].  So while everyone will have to deal with the consequences of these oil & gas fields being developed only the company shareholders are benefitting.

So are you really willing further destabilise the planetary climate for a few jobs on the drilling rigs or possible refinery?  If you truly believe that climate disruption is upon us then this application would not be even entertained.

The Porcupine Seabight is a very important ecological area and we are just recently finding out how important the area is for blue and fin whales.  We shouldn’t be threatening these habitats by oil & gas drilling and seismic surveys.

We all have to be brave and challenge and change our previous ways of doing things.  

Like you said “Every person, every community, every business, every home, every farm and every school will have to make changes in the way we live, work, and travel”.

One of your important changes should be reject this application to further develop the fossil fuel industry in Ireland.

Please reject the application from Nexen Petroleum UK Ltd (CNOOC) to drill an exploration well at Iolar on Frontier Exploration Licence FEL3/18.


Gluaiseacht for Global Justice


[1] -

[2] - Corrib operator eyes expansion and tax-free cash - Irish Independent


About Gluaiseacht

Gluaiseacht is a non-hierarchical environmental and social justice movement bringing together grassroots organisations, concerned individuals and student groups from all over Ireland to raise awareness and take non-violent direct action on social, environmental and political issues