When Green Peace heard of shells plans to dump brent spar in the Atlantic they immediately decided to stop it. They decided to use piracy, politics and propaganda to stop shell. The main method they used was going back to their roots and do a boarding of brent spar to stop Shell dumping the spar in the middle of the Atlantic. Green peace were hoping the public would agree with their opinion so they would have stronger grounds to stop shell dumping the spar.
Before Green Peace started their campaign against Shell, Shell had never really had to deal with public opinions, now however they did, especially from Germany. This meant it was a top priority case.
Green Peace argued that dumping the spar would seriously damage the sea life so they boarded it to stop shell dumping it. Shell did not expect this so Green Peace had the advantage of surprise. Shortly after Green Peace boarded the spar shell, with police support had them removed. This did not stop Green Peace, within three days they returned.
Shell had to remove the anchors from brent spar and this gave an opportunity for Green Peace to delay the operation, causing shell to delay it for a year if autumn weather set in. Back on the mainland Green Peace scientists were working hard on countering shells scientific arguments, in 4 weeks they had countered all of them.
The Germans were very interested in this issue and even the German church was saying that what shell was doing is a sin. A lot of accusations were made at Green Peace Germany about them being ‘naughty’, to this they replied “If you are a political pressure group you have to be naughty” this means that because of there political status they cant do everything by the book which is a fair point. English MP’s however accused Germany were just pointing the finger elsewhere to stop people realising how they were damaging the environment, obviously they denied these accusations.
Meanwhile back near the spar Green Peace planned to board once again, this time by helicopter. To avoid the high powered water jets they had to create a diversion, they tried to distract the jets with power boats but this failed so Al and his partner had to jump from the helicopter at 20 feet, in doing so Al’s partner broke his ankles. This was really the final battle in the water. Shells management committee were falling apart. This was the beginning of the end for shells ambition to deep sea dump Brent Spar.
All over Germany the public were beginning to hate shell. German eco-terrorists even bombed 2 shell garages. Because of this the Shell family were falling apart behind closed doors. Despite all this shell were still determined to dump brent spar. They had prepared marines to remove Green peace from the spar and were ready to dump the spar. By this time Green peace thought they had lost. They had just about given up when to their surprise shell ordered the hold of the dump of Brent Spar. Shortly after the decision had been made but before the press release John Major (PM) made a statement saying he supported shells dumping arrangement. When the press release came out it made John Major look like a fool. This was one of the many reasons he retired as head of the conservative party.
Green peace had beaten the shell Giants. But at what cost? In pounds and pence it cost them £1400000 to save spar but also there science was under question. Green peace had won the single issue but they hadn’t won the entire campaign. This raises the question, what’s more important, a single issue or a whole campaign?