This weekend marks the beginning of an ambitious campaign by the Otway Coastal Environment Action Network (OCEAN) to tour all towns along the Great Ocean Road in Victoria and raise awareness of seismic blasting for oil and gas and its devastating impact on marine life.
The three week campaign starts at Ocean Grove on 6 January and finishes in Portland on the 27th. It will include street marches, rallies, live music, expert speakers, film screenings, information tents and paddle-outs.
The popular coastal area is likely to be flourishing with tourists, who don't generally know much about seismic blasting, and they will be encouraged to get involved and learn more about the destructive method used for offshore gas and oil exploration.
OCEAN campaigner Mitch Pope says that people are generally horrified once they are made aware of what’s involved and the impact seismic blasting has on all forms of ocean life.
“Seismic blasting has been happening for years out of sight and mind of ordinary Australians. Basically, we are blowing the lid on the seismic secret. We are confident that once seismic blasting is general knowledge there will be no social licence for this senseless devastation to continue,” Pope said.
Multinational exploration companies TGS and Schlumberger are proposing to seismic blast 5.5 million hectares of the Otway Basin off south west Victoria.
If successful this project will be the largest 3D seismic survey in world history. Last year in response to the proposal, 30,000 submissions were made to the National Offshore Petroleum Safety and Environmental Management Authority (NOPSEMA). The revised environment plan is due to be resubmitted to NOPSEMA early this year.
For media enquiries and a schedule of events, please contact:
Lisa Deppeler, OCEAN
0456 931 323
More information about the tour is available online: https://www.ocean.org.au/greatoceanrescue