Lucy is currently on the Greenpeace Arctic Sunrise and has written the following article for today's New Zealand Herald. For more on Lucy's role as an Eco-Warrior - check out the AUSXIP Lucy Lawless EcoWarrior Subsite
Why I'm In Norway Fighting Aggressive Oil Companies
by Lucy Lawless
19 July 2017
I never thought I'd find myself in Norway, let alone Tromsø, its northernmost city.
The countryside looks a bit like Mt Cook on a grisly day, except that it's approaching mid-summer. I'm here to go on Greenpeace's Arctic Sunrise, to witness Statoil's push outside of Norwegian waters into the Arctic Circle for extreme oil.
They're one of the companies also pushing into deep New Zealand waters and the Great Australian Bight - which makes them one of the most aggressive and controversial oil companies on earth.
Like New Zealand, Norway signed the Paris Agreement to reduce emissions (to stop our planet heating more than 1.5 degrees) and then went right home and issued new oil leases.
It's crazy. Norway also has a constitution that protects the environment for future generations, yet they just handed a whole chunk of licences to Statoil, the state-owned oil company.
Now Greenpeace and others are suing the Norwegian government, which is why we're doing this ship tour. They want to make sure everyone knows what's going on in Norway, and how hypocritical it is.
Instead of investing in a business with a future, Statoil is actually profiteering from the melting Arctic. And if the Arctic goes, can the Antarctic be far behind? What would happen to low-lying cities and their people if all that ice melted? These are things that wake me up in a cold sweat.
In New Zealand, Statoil are looking for oil at perilous depths of two and three kilometres. If there's a spill, who are we gonna call? Why always look for the oil that going to cause the most damage if something goes wrong? And if it all goes 'right'? Then we are on a trajectory for famine, pestilence, wars and mass climate refugees on a level we cannot even comprehend. Is this the future we want for our children?
The sun doesn't set here in Tromsø. At 11pm, there's a blush sky which fades to twilight.
The Arctic has me in its thrall. I'm tucked up in my bunk for my first night on board. The Arctic Sunrise is an ice-breaker which means she doesn't have a keel, so I've been warned she's gonna roll "like a sonofabitch".
Ominously, her nickname is Washing Machine. So buckle up, crew, it's going to be a bumpy night!