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World Climate March - Aljezur demonstrations against oil, intensive agriculture, mining and the destruction of the seabed

worldPortugal's part in the World Climate March ensured the streets were filled in Lisbon, Oporto and Aljezur on Saturday with citizens showing the government that the fight against climate change is not at all compatible with the State's current lust for a home-grown fossil fuel exloration programme.

Demonstrators and environmental NGOs are critical of the Government for the consistently making "wrong decisions" over its energy policy wuth João Camargo of the Climáximo movement stating that the environment is an area in which the government is performing badly.

"Allowing Almaraz is another sign of total subservience to the Spanish, the government is totally blind to the problems at this nuclear lower plant," said Camargo, joined by around 1,000 people in Lisbon and hundreds more in Oporto.

Heloísa Apolónia, Green Party MP, said the Climate March should trigger the end of "unsustainable solutions" and demanded the closure of the Almaraz nuclear power plant in Spain, which "constitutes a threat" to Portugal. (See: http://algarvedailynews.com/news/11554-almaraz-nuclear-report-whitewash-will-keep-eu-happy)

The World Climate March originated in the US to counter Donald Trump’s lack of policy on climate change and events ascross the world added local issues to the main theme of climate change denial.

In the Algarve, the chosen theme was the halting of exploration licences for oil and gas off the coast of Aljezur and the end of other contracts for the exploitation of hydrocarbons across the country.

In Aljezur, organiser ASMAA was joined by A Nossa Terra, Preservar Aljezur, and ALA Nucleo Milfontes and many of their supporters alongside members of the public.

The Aljezur event focused on the off-shore oil drilling licence already awarded to Galp-ENI, the problems caused by intensive fruit farming under plastic that now is covering swathes of the western Algarve, mining licenses for the south-facing slopes of the Monchique mountains and the planned extension of Portugal’s sea area to enable the widespread licensing of hugely destructive seabed mining.

If Portugal's government continues to encourage these highly damaging developments, the industrialisation of the country will not sit happily with the current industry that is supporting so many others - tourism.

The government continues its dream of swinging big with the corporate sector in the hope of large rewards for zero effort, but the hydrocarbon and mineral contracts signed to date have demonstrated that the executive has no idea how to negotiate a good deal for the taxpayer and instead,is being taken advantage of by a skilled corporate sector which is exposing the country to an unlimited environmental downside.