Opinion article by Laurinda Seabra in response to arguments that as the Portuguese government has been "democratically elected", they can do as they please. I disagree.
On Monday 30th October we woke-up to the news that Galp would be disinvesting from the Algarve. The news was spread all over the press, and welcomed by many mayors in local municipalities, other associations, platforms, community groups and the general public at large – except for ASMAA.
OPINION article about why, we at ASMAA don't really believe that Galp, ENI and the government just walked away quietly from three concession areas in the Alentejo Basin.
ENI says that "a delay is inevitable." Meaning that there will be NO DRILLING in 2018 in the Aljezur sea, we also need to take into account that current contract expires in January 2019.
In this article, you’ll find a brief explanation of what is a "Class Action". We've drafted this note, so that everyone understands why it was the most appropriate and the selected course of action followed by ASMAA. Any association can choose to follow this strategic path as long as certain conditions are met. We have taken this opportunity to answer a number of questions that we have received, and which in our opinion are important - so that everyone can be properly informed.
On April 6, 2018, ASMAA filed with the Administrative and Fiscal Tribunal of Loulé (TAF) an action to request the cancellation of oil contracts in the Alentejo Basin, alleging the breach of various contractual and administrative procedures, and process illegalities.
ENI threatens the Portuguese government by alluding that they may lay claim to 4M€ in compensation if drilling of Aljezur coast fails to get the green light to proceed. Alleging that it was the amount of money already spent in preparation for drilling.
A lot of ink has run in the mainstream press and other social media platforms about the alleged victory of PALP in the Loulé Administrative and Fiscal court on 13 August 2018. Let's look at the facts.
On August 14, (the same day that the Ministry of Sea contested the court decision on PALP's suspensive rule) ASMAA challenged in the Administrative and Fiscal Tribunal of Loulé (TAF) the decision by the Entidade Nacional Mercados Combustiveis (ENMC) dated January 9, as well as the Portuguese Environment Agency (APA) public consultation report of May 16 2018.
On Thursday the 26 July (this past week), Antonio Costa during his interview on “5 para a meia noite” (Five to Midnight) on RTP, stated with a smirk on his face, that the drilling by ENI will happen.
So much clouding has been thrown about the date that ENI’s drilling ship Saipem will be allowed to enter Portuguese waters, and start drilling, that we at ASMAA feel its important to clarify a few issues and to place things in context.
In the past few weeks the government disinformation machine has been moving at full throttle. Let’s take a look at what is fiction (The Spin) and what is the hidden truth.
It’s just over a month before the ENI/GALP consortium starts drilling for oil near Aljezur, and there isn’t a glimpse of any concerted and efficient strategies nor any effective action plans being presented to the public by the Algarve municipalities through AMAL.