Court dismisses application to halt Shell's controversial seismic survey

The Makhanda High Court has dismissed an urgent interdict brought by four environmental organisations to slam the brakes on a seismic survey by oil and gas company, Shell, along the Wild Coast.

Shell. © blinow61/123rf.com

CAPE TOWN - The Makhanda High Court in the Eastern Cape has dismissed an urgent interdict brought by four environmental organisations to slam the brakes on a seismic survey by oil and gas company, Shell, along the Wild Coast.

The organisations, including Greenpeace Africa and Natural Justice, filed the urgent court bid earlier this week.

During the survey, the seismic vessel, the Amazon Warrior, will discharge pressurised air from its air gun that generates sound waves directed towards the seabed for the exploration of petroleum resources.

Environmental organisations said that the testing would cause irreparable harm to birdlife and sea life as many species listed as threatened and protected were located directly within the survey area.

Shell argued that the urgent application to stop seismic testing along the Wild Coast was nothing short of abusive.

The company said that there had been around 325 seismic surveys conducted globally, without any reports of death or irreversible harm to marine life.