GREAT AUSTRALIAN BIGHT ALLIANCE MEDIA RELEASE August 20, 2016
John Butler adds his voice to growing opposition to drilling for oil in Bight
Former Greens Leader Bob Brown today issued a challenge to Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to step in and stop BP’s plans to drill for oil in the Great Australian Bight after sailing through the Bight on board Sea Shepherd vessel MY Steve Irwin which has just docked for the first time in Adelaide’s port.
“Here’s a challenge for the Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull, to intervene and keep the Great Australian Bight free of BP’s oil spill threat,” Dr Brown said.
“The Prime Minister should come and see what the Sea Shepherd has seen in the last month, just a trip to the head of the Bight to see the southern right whales and their calves in the nursery that would be destroyed by an oil spill.
“It’s very easy, all he would have to do is walk to the top of the cliffs of the Bight and there they are below you. His intervention would be defending a huge national marine park and South Australian wilderness areas.
“It should not be left to an agency, NOPSEMA, that does not have the national interest at heart. It’s a national asset of the state. He should be looking at the World Heritage values as part of this process. Go, Malcolm.
Renowned musician John Butler will board the MY Steve Irwin on Monday as it makes its way to Kangaroo Island and will headline a Bight campaign fundraiser at Port Adelaide’s Flour Shed tonight.
“I’m here to try to stop a company that has a notoriously bad reputation for the world’s largest oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico from bringing the world’s largest oil rig into the Great Australian Bight,” Mr Butler said.
“These waters are more remote, rough and deeper than the Gulf of Mexico. It’s not a matter of if but when there’s a major oil spill in the Bight.
“The Bight is one of the last great wild places on the planet, full of marine sanctuaries and endemic and endangered species and home to one of the world’s largest oil nurseries.
“Why risk all this on a company with such a horrible reputation and an industry that’s caused enough damage and is only adding to global warming?”
The Bight’s pristine waters are home to 36 species of whales and dolphins, including the world’s most important southern right whale nursery, as well as many humpback, sperm, blue and beak whales. The Bight also supports sea lions, seals, great white sharks, giant cuttlefish and migratory seabirds.
For more information, contact Sea Shepherd media adviser Adam Burling on 0409 472 922
Or Wilderness Society media adviser Alex Tibbitts on 0416 420 168