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Greenpeace calls for “no more oil drilling” 

Greenpeace is calling for a 100 per cent as surance that Repsol’s original permission to drill for oil in the Canaries IS now null and void.

The environmental organisation says it is not convinced because by its calculations, the multi-national’s permit does not run out until 2017.

They are still very worried about the future protection of the ocean around Fuerteventura and Lanzarote where Repsol carried out unsuc-cessful testing in early 2015. The company later said it had found no trace of oil and had abandoned its plans.

The issue was one of the biggest to hit the Canary Islands in decades and led to massive protests, not only on local beaches but across the world with thousands of people signing a petition and dozens of groups adding their weight to the fight.

Greenpeace wants this particular area to be given special protection as an international cetacean sanctuary for its enormous natural value. This, they say, would totally ensure that no-one could come back and seek oil ever again.

Greenpeace alleges that Repsol had three permissions for surveys but claims it abandoned the operation when nothing was initially found because of “the enormous damage it did to their reputation”.

The Spanish Government, which gave permission against the wishes of the Canary authorities, says the permits have expired.

However Greenpeace is again querying this, believing the expiry date is 2017 because it was for three years.

They believe designation as an international sanctuary for whales as one of the few places in the world with the most mammals would alleviate fears for the future.

The Ministry of Industry says that technically, the permits have expired though there is a period of 60 days to wait and time for consideration of a possible extension. However, it insists that Repsol has already said it doesn’t want a renewal