Potential hydrocarbon exploration in Greece, will Blue or Black Growth be the choice?
The planned extraction of hydrocarbon deposits in Greece poses a dramatic risk of irreversible ecological and socio-economic disaster both within the marine regions and productive land zones where oil exploration is proposed, as well as for the country as a whole. Simultaneously, whilst the European Union focuses on a strategy of Blue and Green Growth, a large proportion of Greek politicians persist to focus on “Black Growth”. They promote fossil fuel exploration as an economic solution despite the potential for this to lead to the degradation of touristic, agricultural and natural areas, upon which are based the main economic activities of the country.
The exploitation of these relatively small reserves is of particular concern, given the large depth associated with the offshore fields as well as the seismic activity in the area, resulting in a logistically and technically challenging operation. Inevitably this proposed approach will result in a consequential increase in environmental impacts with different characteristics: direct and indirect, short and long term, temporary and permanent, singular and cumulative.
Archipelagos Institute for Marine Conservation calls upon organisations and active citizens to consider the real benefits and dangers of the planned hydrocarbon exploitation in Greece and exercise their rights under the Aarhus convention to participate in the decision making process.
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