Algarve’s anti-oil group holds first public meeting

Algarve anti-oil group PALP (standing for Plataforma Algarve Livre de Petróleo) is holding its first public get-together on May 30 at the Faro Spot Café.

The group that seeks to “defend the Algarve as a sustainable region and oppose local oil exploration” hopes to attract interest by presenting a number of lectures by environmental specialists.

Starting at 4pm the afternoon is due to end with a debate.

According to PALP, anyone is invited to give their ideas and opinions.

In a recent open letter to the people of Portugal, the group explained how it wants to alert Algarveans to the “importance of opposing oil exploration along the coast”.

Meantime, the future of oil exploration in the Algarve remains uncertain.

There are those who claim it could go ahead as early as later this year, while last week oil giant Partex revealed it all depends on whether large enough oil and/or gas deposits are found.

According to PALP, “apart from the risks posed to the environment, tourism and the local people, there are hardly any financial or economic advantages for the Portuguese government (over oil exploration) as profits will go into the pockets of a private company.”

PALP is made up of citizens groups and NGOs, including Glocal-Faro, Movimento Algarve Livre de Petróleo, Quercus, Almargem, SPEA, Peace and Art Society and News Loop.

It will soon be presenting a national petition against oil exploration and has meantime been in touch with local councils – at least one of which “is keen to dialogue”.