This morning, in Greece’s Parliament, MeRA25’s parliamentarians are staging an all-out struggle against the ratification of disastrous contracts between the previous (SYRIZA) government and multinational oil companies. The contracts to be ratified give the companies (including Exxon-Mobil and Total) full licence to drill, extract and exploit gas and oil reserves across Greece’s beautiful seas (Ionian, Aegean, Cretan and Libyan).
Unfortunately, every other Greek party has awarded MeRA25 the monopoly over the programmatic, wholesale opposition to the exploitation of new fossil fuel sources.
- The New Democracy government is, today, walking happily the path paved by the previous SYRIZA administration, who signed the original contracts
- SYRIZA is now voting against ratification despite the fact that the ink has not yet dried on the contracts signed by their ministers (they are voting against on the pretext that they oppose the impending privatisation of the only Greek company involved, despite the sad fact that it was SYRIZA ministers who started the ball rolling toward its privatisation!)
The Communist Party is also voting against on the grounds that they oppose all drilling by foreign multinationals, even though they are in principle in favour of oil and gas exploitation (as if everything would be fine if climate catastrophe were accelerated by state-owned companies!)
This monopoly against all new fossil fuel exploitation that other parties are gifting us with is a monopoly that we wish we did not have. We would be thrilled if other parties joined us in condemning drilling for oil and gas and in supporting the green transition that humanity so desperately needs, rather than pretending to be ecologically minded while supporting new fossil fuels. Alas, they refuse to do so.
Thankfully there are other voices that merge with ours – with the voice of MeRA25 and DiEM25. They are the children who strike worldwide every Friday, demanding their future back. And there are the voices of older people – activists, scientists and influential intellectuals across the globe.
Like that of NAOMI KLEIN who, today, is sending a message of support to our MeRA25 parliamentarians. Here is Naomi’s message:
Greece is on the front lines of accelerating climate breakdown. Your farmers are suffering under prolonged drought and you have lost too many lives to wildfires. As a coastal nation, you are also coping with the reality that more and more people beyond your borders have been forced to abandon their beloved homelands because those lands have been made unlivable by drought and conflicts intensified by water scarcity.
In this context of rapidly escalating suffering, it is beyond madness for you to literally pour fuel on these planetary flames by ratifying contracts with four oil companies to extract yet more fossil fuels from your beautiful seas, endangering fragile ecosystems on both a local and planetary scale.
I stand with MeRA25 as the only party forcefully opposing this reckless legislation. I urge all legislators of good conscience to listen to the science — and listen to the children around the world striking for their futures – and join MeRA25 in drawing the line. Because our house is on fire and we have a very small window to put out the flames.
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