ManiFEST Press Release, First Edition: “Don’t Mess with Us”
Bucharest, 12th September 2014
For a few days, between 6th and 8th of September, the village of Puiesti (Romania) was uplifted from an unobtrusive Vaslui village to a center of activism. Several organizations and informal action groups, including “FrackFree Group” – Bucharest”, “Civic intervention Group” – Braşov, “Resistance Group Puieşti” and “Resistance Group Pungeşti”, with the support of groups such as “Oastea lui Ştefan” from Vaslui, “Resistance Bârlad” and volunteers from all over Romania and Europe (Greece, UK, Bulgaria, Rep. Moldova), gathered to create the first edition of the ManiFEST festival (for a world without fracking), entitled playfully but strongly: “Cu noi nu te PUIesti” (Don’t mess with us). The festival took place in a symbolic space, owned by village councillor David Roma, located close to the perimeter where Chevron holds all permits required to build an exploration well for shale gas. (more…)
Our fellow group member Alexandru Popescu, who has been on hunger strike under the blue sky during last winter, has set off today on his 3150 km long walk for a frackfree Romania and Europe. Some 50 other activists have joined the start of his walk. He will be on the road for the next 3 months, reaching, among others, Budapest, Vienna, Berlin, Paris and eventually Brussels. On the 1st of December, the National Day of Romania, he will be delivering an antifracking and anticyanide message in front or inside of the European Parliament.
Another group member Gayzer Frackman will be joining him setting off 14 days before Alexandru Popescu will reach Brussels, to enhance the message and show solidarity. We hope that meanwhile the two of them will inspire more people Europe-wide to join this march.
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. (more…)
This year at FanFest we plan to discuss various subjects, but all in strong connection to Rosia Montana and environmental protection. Fracking endangers the environment, the local communities and it destroys the possibility of a true sustainable development, in full respect for the local decision and consent.
The activists that bare the toughest battles in this field are calling on all of us to get involved:
”Friday, on the 15th of August, we will take a retrospective look to what has been done in this area, good or bad. Until now we fought our battles individually, but now its high time we coordinate our actions. Lets all meet at FanFest to identify and plan joint actions at national level. We expect all of you, as many as possible, with feasible ideas and, most of all, the belief that we can fight and win the war on fracking!” – Maria Olteanu, antifracking activist. (more…)
Chevron announced today that it has finished drilling its first exploration rig in Pungesti and that it will withdrew from the village of Pungesti, which seen one of the most dire human rights situations in reaction to fracking in the whole world. The move comes one day after the peaceful protest of the 25 people from Greenpeace, coming form 7 countries, was staged, yet no connection between the two events was made so far.
Chevron was supposed to be drilling until it reached the depth of 4.000 meters, yet it withdrew after having drilled only about 3.000 meters depth. No further explanations were made by the company as to why it did not go all the way down, as proposed. The drilling was supposed to be taking 3 months, yet Chevron made the announcement 2 months and one week after its aofficial announcement of the beginning of the drilling. The activists in the area, who tried to keep an eye on the works, maintian that the drilling started earlier than the beginning of May, as the last part of the rig arrived in Pungesti on 18th of March, and the scene was all set for it to begin. An explanation of this earlier withdrawal than expected could be due to this situation which was held from people’s eyes, whatever the reasons are. (more…)
Greenpeace activists from 7 countries stage protest at the Chevron shale gas exploratory well in Pungesti
A group of 25 Greenpeace activists from seven countries on Monday staged a protest in Pungesti, at the site of the exploratory shale gas well owned by U.S. company Chevron, pressing for a ban on hydraulic fracturing for shale gas extraction, reads a release of the environmental organization on Monday.
The activists from Romania, Hungary, Austria, the Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia and Germany staged a peaceful protest and declared a quarantine zone around the Chevron well, forming a human chain at the entrance of the Chevron frackingm site, and then chaining themselves to the fence surrounding the well and held up banners with the messages: “Pungesti — Anti-Chevron Quarantine Area”, “NO to Hydraulic Fracturing”, “Stop the Abuses in Pungesti!” (more…)