Croatian gas platform in the Adriatic lost at sea for five days
Zagreb, 11th December 2020
In response to the mysterious disappearance of a gas platform in the Adriatic sea, which was finally located on the seabed after several days of search, Greenpeace strongly urges Croatian oil and gas company INA and the Croatian Government to adjust their response to this incident to the seriousness of the situation, and urgently examine the risk of gas leakage on all platforms in the Adriatic.
Greenpeace projection in Dubrovnik against offshore drilling in the Adriatic sea
"It is completely unacceptable and scandalous that a company loses its gas platform at sea and fails to locate it for five days. This incident seriously undermines INA’s credibility for performing the already risky operations of hydrocarbon exploitation in the Adriatic, and clearly exposes serious security threats posed by fossil fuels infrastructure"- said Zoran Tomic, Director of Greenpeace in Croatia.
The global environmental organization has pointed out that there is no clear evidence that the closure of the well has been successful, wondering whether methane is still leaking uncontrollably and thus fueling the climate crisis. Greenpeace therefore urges INA and the state authorities to immediately investigate the leakage of greenhouse gases from this well, as well as all others on its side of the Adriatic Sea. Recent scientific research shows that methane emissions from offshore fossil fuel exploitation are significantly higher than previously estimated.
Not so long ago, both INA and the Croatian government claimed that new exploitation of oil and gas in the Adriatic did not pose a threat to the marine ecosystem, purportedly due to the highest environmental and technological standards applied. If this had been an oil rig, the kind that are envisaged in the current National Energy and Climate Plan of the Republic of Croatia, environmental and economic damage to the Adriatic Sea and the country’s tourism would be incalculable and irreparable, as can be learned from the grim history of offshore oil accidents.
Greenpeace adds that, even if the automatic well closure has succeeded this time, there is no guarantee it will succeed the next time something like this happens. Stormy weather and big waves simply broke off the huge steel structure and sank it. Climate change caused by fossil fuels, such as oil and gas, makes extreme weather occurrences increasingly frequent and devastating.
"This incident is another in a series of examples that we must urgently move away from fossil fuels. Not only does their combustion pollute the environment and push the climate crisis to a point of no return, but also the infrastructure used in their exploitation and transport destroys our ecosystems, even when everything seems to be fine. And we just witnessed how fine it is", Tomić concluded.
Marija Tomac, firstname.lastname@example.org , +385 95 62 74 528
Zoran Tomić, email@example.com, +385 91 234 5092