If you want to stop a giant oil company from drilling in the Arctic, you have a few options. A large group of Portland residents are currently forming a blockade to prevent one of the oil company’s ships from getting to the Arctic. And they’re doing it with kayaks.
The Greenpeace-organized protest, which is known as #ShellNo, is trying to stop Shell’s MSV Fennica from making its way down the Willamette River to the Pacific, where it is scheduled to make the journey to the Arctic. The protest began with people rappelling off the St. John’s Bridge yesterday, and today, dozens of kayaks and canoes (kayaktivists!) are in the water below the bridge hoping to “turn Shell around.”
The Coast Guard is towing away boats and at least two people have been arrested, but it appears that the Shell vessel has returned to its dock and delayed its departure schedule, at least for now. It’s also 100 degrees in Portland right now, so at the very least this is making for a lovely summer evening on the river.
Update: The Coast Guard succeeded in removed the protesters, and the ship came back later that evening made it through the blockade.
Follow the author at @awalkerinLA