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REPSOLAs Portugal’s government and National Fuels Authority continue to claim that oil and gas companies’ activity off the Algarve’s coastline is merely exploratory and nothing has been found that would be worthwhile extracting, Repsol has kept quiet about a huge gas field off the Algarve's coastline that it discovered sometime between October 2011 and January 2013.

The boss of Portugal's 'Entidade Nacional para o Mercado de Combustíveis,' (ENMC) Paulo Carmona, all along has tried to play down oil company activity as being 'merely exploratory with a low chance of success' and stated in January 2016 that there has yet to be any discovery that would be economically viable.

oilrig2On January 12th, this year at the public consultation in Faro hosted by the government's national authority for oil (ENMC), the campaigning organisation ASMAA handed the president of ENMC, Paulo Carmona, a document with a list questions concerning the region's residents.

Below are the replies, most of them being standard or evasive or simply, 'no comment.' Your comments are welcome at the end, click on 'add comment'.

oilrigThe new Centre for Oil Knowledge has been set up to define and describe the oil industry, to look at Portugal’s geology and to act as a research resource for students and engineers.
The new centre is being promoted as a ‘technical-scientific support infrastructure’ whose primary mission is to 'explain the conservation and development of hydrocarbon resources with reference to the country's heritage and the Portuguese people.'

oilrigtransportThe oil rig transporter Osprey remains in a bizarre holding pattern within the Algarve's offshore oil concession areas as environmental organisations wonder what the ship’s Captain is up to.

Reports on Monday indicated the vessel was heading to Rotterdam in the Netherlands with its single cargo of one sizeable oil rig.

oilrig2The anti-oil pressure group ASMAA today launched an Algarve-wide petition to support the region's Council Mayors in their firm stance against the government's plans to turn the Algarve into an oil and gas production zone, offshore and onshore.

Readers now can download and sign the "Nem UM Furo - Nem Agora nem no Futuro" petition directed at the Mayors of those 14 Algarve municipalities most affected by the government’s oil and gas ambitions.

oilrigtransportA distant view of an oil rig some 15 miles from the Algarve coast caused consternation over the weekend as many assumed this was the start of the Algarve’s unwitting birth as an oil producing area.

In fact the indistinct shape was that of an upper section of an oil rig being transported on a specialist ship.

The first sightings were reported from Tavira and Monte Gordo and news soon spread that rig seemed either to be stationary or going around in circles.

seahorsePortugal’s League for the Protection of Nature issued a position statement today which unsurprisingly allied itself to the anti-oil exploration and extraction lobby based in the Algarve.

The League started off by congratulating the Government for its recent decision not to proceed with the public tenders for granting seven new licenses for exploration and production of oil and natural gas.

oilrig2In a surprise move from the Prime Minister’s pro-oil government, the Ministry of the Economy has confirmed that the outstanding tenders for oil and gas exploration have been cancelled.

Seven licences were on offer to companies to allow exploration for oil and gas, and its subsequent extraction from blocks off the Algarve and Oporto shores, but these will no longer be sold or assigned.