Saturday 15 July 2023 2.50pm
An INEOS gas power station that powers the Grangemouth oil refinery has been occupied as part of a 'Day of Resistance' against INEOS’ profits from pollution.
Four people held a banner from the roof of the INEOS plant reading 'Climate Justice for Grangemouth'.
Combined climate emissions from the gas power station and the oil refinery it powers make it Scotland's most polluting site. (1) The continued running of both sites is incompatible with action to curb the climate crisis.
A larger group of hundreds of people also marched to the fence of INEOS Grangemouth. They were met by Police Scotland who defended INEOS property and attempted to cordon-in the protest, despite participants sticking to pavements.
Their march began in Kinneil where people from the local community and across the world have been participating in a five day 'climate camp'.
Further developments will be reported by Climate Camp Scotland over the course of the day.
Kenny Alexander was a petrochemicals worker for 35 years and grew up in Grangemouth and supports the protest. He said:
"INEOS' Jim Ratcliffe is a multi-billionaire and the transfer of public wealth into a massive private swag bag is eye watering. While this country that he says he cares about is in massive debt he lives on super yachts in Monaco escaping tax!
"I had a heating bill in the winter one month £600 while I could see Ratcliffe refinery lit up like New York. He doesn’t pay a heating bill he exploits ours, an abuse of power akin to the highland clearances for the population around Grangemouth. Our bills go up while he lives the high life.
"The Industrial Revolution started this pollution but we have the knowledge and solution a non-violent green revolution. Transition must start now and should start here. Lets be world leaders on tackling global warming."
Jemma Kettlewell from Fife took part in the camp and said:
"The local community living around Grangemouth have lived in fear of the INEOS plant for too long. The consequences of burning fossil fuels at the plant releases hazardous pollutants which cause mental & physical health impacts, as billionaire Jim Radcliffe profits from violating human rights and damaging the climate catastrophically, not just here in Scotland but worldwide.
"Communities deserve better. We need a rapid phase out of fossil fuels and investment in an affordable energy system. A just transition to green, clean well paid jobs. A transition to a liveable future."
Jessica Gaitan Johannesson, Climate Camp Scotland said:
"We're here because while INEOS makes hundreds of millions in profit each year, the people of Grangemouth pay the price with their health, workers pay with their job security, and all of us with the collapse of our climate.
“We can build truly sustainable communities, but we must be led by those whose lives are most at risk, locally and globally.
“We do not accept sky high bills, polluted air and a collapsing climate. This energy system is failing us, but Scotland and Grangemouth can transition to sustainable industry and greater equality. We’re here to drive that change together."
INEOS' operations in Grangemouth created a staggering 2.4 million tonnes of annual emissions when last counted by SEPA (1). The environmental protection agency has issued INEOS with multiple fines for safety breaches and premature deaths in Grangemouth town are significantly higher than the national average. (2)
Despite the urgent need to end the burning of fossil fuels INEOS is planning a new fossil-gas powered plant to manufacture hydrogen which would create yet more pollution. (3)
INEOS announced profits of £474 million last year at a time when residents living around the INEOS works struggled with spiralling food and gas bills. (4) Instead of investing in green jobs or the local community, billionaire owner Jim Ratcliffe is using his spare cash to buy football club Manchester United and INEOS have refused to participate in a Parliamentary inquiry about transition at Grangemouth (5).
Yesterday a group from the climate camp occupied an INEOS oil tanker terminal. Four activists kayaked into the water beneath the INEOS oil terminal at Hound Point and held banners reading "Resist and Renew". One person entered the terminal itself and held a banner reading "INEOS: profiting from poverty and pollution". (6)
Climate camp organisers say that Grangemouth could be renewed with well-paid jobs in sustainable industries, but the shift must be led by people, not big business. The camp continues with a full programme of talks and workshops up until Monday. (7)
NOTES TO EDITORS
Photos of the protests are available at:
More photos will be added over the course of the day.
1. Four of the top 20 climate polluters in Scotland are INEOS owned installations in Grangemouth: https://theferret.scot/rogues-gallery-climate-polluters-top-20-revealed/
2. Safety and health sources:
Ineos fined £400,000 over Grangemouth gas leak - BBC:
INEOS oil terminal occupied to highlight £474 million profit from pollution:
Local health impacts, see page 9, Falkirk Council Report on Grangemouth town:
3. INEOS plans to manufacture hydrogen using fossil fuels:
4. 'Billionaire Brexiter’s energy giant Ineos nets £474m profit thanks to soaring prices' - The Guardian:
5. Petrochemical giant Ineos snubs Scottish Government net zero committee refusing to 'go on the record' - Falkirk Herald
6. INEOS oil terminal occupied to highlight £474 million profit from pollution: https://www.climatecampscotland.com/post/ineos-oil-terminal-occupied-to-highligh-474-million-profit-from-pollution-press-release
7. Climate Camp programme and guide PDF: