Alasdair Keddie: We must overturn the Government policy of Maximum Economic Recovery of Petroleum

8 October 2019

Alasdair Keddie, Green Party General Election candidate for Bournemouth East, has delivered a speech outside the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy in London during the latest Extinction Rebellion protests, demanding an immediate end to the UK Government's policy of Maximum Economic Recovery of Petroleum.

Alasdair said: "[We're outside] the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy - otherwise known as the heart of the beast when it comes to oil exploration and fossil fuel extraction in the UK.

"There's a little known fact that the Infrastructure Act of 2015 enshrines something called Maximum Economic Recovery of Petroleum, which legally binds the Government to extract every last drop of oil from our continental shelf. This is the policy that has led to an oil rig exploring for oil in my hometown of Bournemouth, in our beautiful bay. This exploratory project found 30 million barrels of crude oil in a site of Special Scientific Interest, a marine protected zone for seahorses, and this department granted their permits.

"We urgently need to overturn the policy of Maximum Economic Recovery of Petroleum, and it is something we need to demand of this department, very strongly and very clearly. We have got seismic testing going on in a place called Kimmeridge Bay, in the Purbecks... It's a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and when I was there with my wife and children, they had seismic thumper trucks at the top of the cliff, and you could see, they're literally vandalising a UNESCO World Heritage Site for oil exploration. And it was this department that granted their permits. It was this department responsible for granting the fracking permits. We need to hold them to account.

"You may have heard in the media that there is a strong likelihood of a General Election shortly. We need to hold our candidates to account, and we need to hold any new government to overturn Maximum Economic Recovery of Petroleum."