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Alaska Beat

Paul McCartney joins Greenpeace in fight for Arctic: 'I am the walrus'

  • Author: Craig Medred
  • Updated: September 27, 2016
  • Published July 24, 2012

Paul McCartney has announced on Huffington Post that he is joining Greenpeace's campaign to create a legally protected sanctuary in the Arctic where oil rigs and commercial fishing vessels cannot venture.

As Shell Oil's fleet comes closer to drilling for oil off of Alaska's northern coast this summer, Greenpeace has ramped up its protests. From occupying ships in port, to carrying submarines to chart the depths of waters surrounding the drill site, to the fake Shell PR event that went viral, Greenpeace has been in the press; McCartney, a former Beatles singer, will surely do them no harm in that department.

McCartney's plea to join the Save The Arctic campaign touches on the year that has gone down in American history books as a time of revolution and change: 1968. A hallmark in that year was the mission to the moon where William Anders took "perhaps the most influential photograph of all time," the rising of the Earth over the moon. That photograph changed the way humans viewed the world and ushered in an environmental era, McCartney says.

Today, much of the sea ice captured in that photograph has disappeared, and McCartney is concerned that the lessons captured, and triggered, by that picture have been forgotten in favor of oil drilling. He wonders why the receding ice -- which he says has covered the pole for 800,000 years -- has prompted a call to jump on oil drilling.

"They're exploiting the disappearance of the ice to drill for the very same fuel that caused the melting in the first place." McCartney writes. "Fossil fuels have colonized every corner of our Earth, but at some time and in some place we need to say, "No more." I believe that time is now and that place is the Arctic."

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