Environmental activists protest over Shell’s planned offshore search for oil

On Sunday morning, the oil giant docked their new seismic survey ship at the Cape Town Harbour in preparation for oil exploration off the Garden Route coastline.

Shell. © blinow61/123rf.com

CAPE TOWN - Protesting environmental activists have raised the alarm over Shell's planned offshore searches for oil.

On Sunday morning, the oil giant docked their new seismic survey ship at the Cape Town Harbour in preparation for oil exploration off the Garden Route coastline.

The vessel will essentially shoot seismic waves, like those from earthquakes and explosions, down to the ocean floor to detect possible oil reserves.

Those aboard the ship were fiercely met by several protestors from the Green Connection.

The group's strategic lead Liz McDaid explained the impact this may have on our oceans: “That noise has a large impact on large animals like whales, planktons on which fishes feed and if these fish can’t move out of the way, they will be potentially harmed.”

Sunday's docking ironically coincides with World Fisheries Day.

McDaid said government's approval of Shell's plan without a proper impact assessment could be especially devasting for small-scale fishers.

“The people of South Africa don’t want more oil and gas; there’s thousands of people living on the coast who depend on the sea for their livelihoods. It is important we celebrate all our fishes and protect them.”