Arctic drilling? Seattle is Shell-shocked
March 5, 2015

The Port of Seattle recently signed a lease with Shell Oil to allow the company to base its Arctic drilling operations in Seattle. There were no public hearings, no comment period, and seemingly, no consideration for the values of the Puget Sound residents.

Drilling for oil as the Arctic ice melts is like pouring gas on the fire of catastrophic climate change.  A new study in Nature confirms that if we want to have any hope to avoid the most catastrophic impacts from global warming, we can’t allow oil drilling in the Arctic, or other forms of extreme fossil fuel development.

In other words, we can either let Shell drill in the Arctic, or we can leave our kids a planet fit for human civilization. We can’t do both.

It’s bad enough that Shell would knowingly undo our future this way. But using Seattle as the staging area for this madness?  That’s adding insult to injury.  Seattle is justifiably proud of our leadership on climate and clean energy.  We’re standing up to coal and oil industry by rejecting their terminal proposals. We’re pioneering sustainable prosperity-the antidote to climate disruption.  Our Port of Seattle has made significant investments in clean energy and climate, at times living up to its tagline as “The Green Gateway." It makes no sense to sacrifice the Port’s credibility only to help Shell unleash huge amounts of carbon that need to stay out of the atmosphere.  
Please help us deliver this message to Shell and the Port of Seattle:  Not here.  Not us.  No gosh darn way. 

The Port Commissioners will meet this Tuesday to discuss this proposal and we plan to pack the house.  Please join us, wear red and say NO WAY.
What: Port Commissioner hearing
When: Tues. March 10, 1 p.m.
Where: Conference Center at Sea-Tac, south end of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

We recommend taking the Light Rail or other public transit to the meeting, but if you need to drive, the Port of Seattle will validate your parking.

Please RSVP to me via email, and I will forward you talking points that may be helpful in composing public testimony. You are also very welcome to just attend in solidarity.

Want to do more?  Please send an email to the Seattle City Council asking them to “please urge the Port to rescind the lease between Shell and the Port.”

Spread the word on Facebook.

Connect with Climate Solutions

Author Bio

Joëlle Robinson

Field Director, Climate Solutions

Joëlle engages community members and diverse constituencies—faith, health, youth, parents, business—to make their voices heard for climate solutions. She led the team of organizers to ensure we stopped any coal export from the U.S. West Coast over the past decade. On offense, she co-led the Field team to help pass the 100% Clean Electricity (Clean Energy Transition Act in 2019) and in 2022 collaborated with the Field team to ensure that all new buildings (commercial and residential) will be built with heat pumps per the State Building Code Council. She continues to conspire for good with them on many other local and state initiatives.

Joëlle was the Regional Outreach Coordinator of National Wildlife Federation where she focused on mobilizing hunters, anglers and concerned citizens around solutions to global warming. Previous work with Climate Solutions includes the NW Climate Connections partnership, serving as the Field Assistant for the successful Clean Cars campaign, and Field Director of the Renewable Fuel Standard, which passed in April 2006.

She previously served on the boards of Earth Ministry, Solar Washington, and Sierra Club Executive Committee. She’s currently President of the board of her 3 year-old!

Joëlle is Northwest born and raised who loves to hike, dance, travel and explore the natural world.

Her favorite quote is “Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” —  Mary Oliver

Give for a brighter future

Did you enjoy this article?