Dear antifracking community worldwide,
The antifracking activists in Romania have the pleasure to invite you to the first international arts & music anti-fracking festival, ManiFEST, taking place in Puiești, Vaslui County, on 6-8 September 2014.
We have a saying in Romania: “In the autumn, one counts one’s goslings”. Since last autumn, we started a new tradition here, in Romania: we started counting the goslings that care about the future of their country.
From FanFest, the first environmental activist festival in Romania, dedicated to the fight against cyanide mining, we are moving to the other side of the Carpathian mountain range and setting up a new natural dam against projects that are deeply threatening to the environment and public health. A dam which consists of: common sense, a thorough and unabiding connection to NATURE, and the respect for the right of communities to decide on their own future. A dam made of informed and determined people. Determined to stop the destructive steamroller of fracking which is threatening to destroy the future of humanity and our almost unspoiled part of the world, Romania.
Motto: Don’t mess with us! (Romanian: “Cu noi NU TE PUIesti”, word-play)
Organisations and informal groups opposed to fracking, with the help of the municipality of Puiești, Vaslui County, have joined forces to organise the first festival dedicated to the fight to preserve our clean water, air and soil and the public health – the ANTI-Fracking fight. The idea of the festival started when we realised that it is sometimes easier to bring people together and communicate about social and political issues, by means of art and music.
ManiFEST Festival 2014 is the first of many exciting activist events set to draw the attention on the tremendous dangers of fracking, especially among the youth. It also emphasizes the right of communities and individuals to live in a clean environment. We also want to put forth alternative development models, to present alternatives for the rural communities, away from the concept of extraction, that´s so deeply rooted in the minds of our illegitimate government, who declared themselves against this concept until they came to power. We also want to show them that the POWER is in our hands, the people’s, the 99%.
ManiFEST festival will contribute to strengthening the awareness of the general public on the issue of hydraulic fracturing and unconventional fuel extraction, and will send out a message of support for all the communities that are threatened by fracking projects, in Romania and elsewhere. We are all convinced of the fact that fracking is a very dangerous technology, with a huge and irreversible impact on human health and the environment.
One cannot mess with the locals in Puiesti. They are determined, just like the people in Pungesti and many other people in Romania and elsewhere, to put an end to the insanity of fracking, at all costs.
For this, they need our support, as they are facing such a struggle for the first time in their lives and they lack the means and the skills to oppose an energy giant such as Chevron. Our support will give them power to fight fracking with even more determination, against the drilling planned by Chevron. It will also help the participants and the supporters to connect with the elements they are so connected with nature, unlike people in the cities: the water and the earth and understand why fighting for them is so important.
Also, the solidarity they will be receiving from all over Romania and the world, exactly like that in Puiesti, will show people in the communities that are threatened by fracking projects (that’s the case for roughly 70% of the Romanian countryside, which is home to almost half of its 20 million population) that they are not alone against this unprecedented aggression towards life on Earth.
This year, the festival will be organized on a field right next to where Chevron wants to drill its second exploration rig, only 1 km away from the village of Puiesti.
We will have activism and civic resistance workshops, movie screenings, debates, great music, healthy food and loads of positive energy, hopefully enough to pull down the rig!
Confirmed artists (the list is updating by the day)
Gologan (BG), Frances Leader (UK)
Harry Tavitian, KUMM/ Mihai Iordache, Rotaru, R.U.S.T., Lish, Division of Joy, Taissia/The Fine o’Clock Band, Poetrip, Soul Serenade, Maria Raducanu, Lish, Rotaru and Afty, Fine it´s Pink, Pinholes.
The organisers of the event: The Resistance Puiesti, the Resistance Pungesti, Frack Free Group, Civic Intervention Group, supported by the Puiesti municipality.
All the performances are pro-bono and the festival is organized by volunteers from various cities across Romania, as well as from the Romanian diaspora. International guests are expected and welcomed to take part in the event.
In order to organize this first edition, we need your help! As the municipality of Puiesti is on a shoestring budget, we need to raise funds to get the artists to the location, accommodate them, rent the stage and the sound equipment, and pay for the meals of the volunteers who will help setting up the area. We also need some money to print out materials (posters, leaflets) and to drive around to manage the organization of the festival. Any penny matters!
Thank you in advance for your solidarity!
Account holder: Olteanu Mariana
IBAN: DE72 1007 0024 0509 2564 00,
All type of publicity and partnership is also highly appreciated.
Convinced that a frack free world is possible,
The ManiFEST team thanks you all for your support
Please visit our page: http://www.festivalmanifest.ro
Pungești has already become a symbol of the resistance against fracking, famous both in Romania and internationally. For more than 9 months, the people in Pungesti have shown a rare civil courage while fighting an oppressive state apparatus set to destroy their brave resistance. Yet they did not surrender. Now the exploration derrick has been removed from Pungesti, yet the people have grown very strong in their fight and are very determined not to let the rig there enter the exploitation phase.
In Puiesti, the new hotspot of the resistance against fracking in Romania, a new rig for exploring for shale gas is about to be drilled by Chevron, its second one in Romania, yet unfortunately not the second shale gas exploration well, as we keep unveiling their hidden drilling shale gas exploration projects elsewhere in Romania. In Puiesti, the Local Council has drafted and unanimously voted an anti-fracking ban document, which is now being fought against by the central government. The whole community is against fracking, as well, just like in Pungesti.
Nevertheless, Chevron managed to get a building permit this summer and is preparing to drill an exploration rig for shale gas. This time, unlike last year, in Pungesti, when Chevron, helped by the whole state apparatus, has brutally intervened to quench any form of resistance, we want to get there before Chevron does. We want to “welcome” them as they are supposed to be welcomed. Not with bread and salt, like the Romanian hospitality tradition requires for a guest, but with loads of decibels. Much more than those they will be employing to drill their rig, day in, day out. On top of that, we will “welcome” them with peaceful resistance, creatively, intelligently, just like the mindset of the people living around here.
The festival will also help to set-up and strengthen the second permanent anti-fracking camp in Romania.
The rig in Puiesti is one of 2800 rigs intended to be drilled in Chevron’s EV2 Barlad perimeter in NE Romania, and one of the tens of thousands planned to be drilled all over Romania, on the more than 60% of the Romanian territory licensed for drilling, including hydraulic fracturing. This makes the fracking problem by far the biggest environmental problem Romania and the world will be facing in the medium, long and very long term, unless the citizens of the world, united, join forces to stop this horrific threat to life on Earth and to Mankind.