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Tourism chief blasts oil and gas exploration

oilrigThe Algarve Tourism Region has called for the public to participate in the public consultation against the exploration and exploitation of gas and oil, a process that run until April 16th.
In today's statement, the RTA "once again rejects the exploration and exploitation of hydrocarbons off Aljezur and requires that an Environmental Impact Assessment is commissioned by the Portuguese Environment Agency," which it considers essential.
“The use of toxic substances and deployment of methods which may be harmful to human health and to the environment, that raise seismic risks, that impact the daily life of the population and has a harmful impact on tourism, the activity of the greatest importance to the economy of the Algarve and of the country, especially when considering nature tourism," is the RTA’s clear anti-oil and gas stance.
The Algarve "intends to continue to be a natural destination that excels in security, the quality of its infrastructures and the excellence of its offer," explained the RTA.
An Environmental Impact Assessment also is, "essential for assessing the climate implications of global warming against the Government's commitment to decarbonisation."
The RTA, run by Desidério Silva, calls on the Algarve and all Portuguese people “to participate actively in this public consultation to prevent this highly polluting and dangerous project from endangering the ecosystems and the quality of life in the Region.”
After two public consultations in which 42,000 people and the region’s mayors opposed the oil and gas drilling project, the Government opened a third public consultation to determine the need for an Environmental Impact Assessment.
The public consultation documentation is available online, at www.participa.pt where people can register their opinions and suggestions.
On Saturday, April 14, at 3:00 p.m., a demonstration is to be held in Lisbon to protest at the test well that is planned in the ocean off Aljezur.
Protestors will march from Luís de Camões Square, towards the Assembly of the Republic, via Calçada do Combro.
In Largo de São Bento, short speeches will be given by the organisers along with musical performances.
This is a national event and will bring together people from all over the country and of different political views.
Desidério Silva’s outspoken anti-oil stance backs up the Algarve region’s mayors group, AMAL and the leading business associations in the Algarve which has the most to lose if the oil and gas drilling goes ahead. 
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