beacon norway

Brussels/Oslo, 11th March 2017 – Beacons, traditionally lit by communities along the coast of Norway to warn of imminent danger, will light up across Europe on March 11th to highlight the renewed threat to Norway’s pristine arctic coastlines from the oil industry [1].

The areas off the coast of the arctic islands of Lofoten, Vesterålen and Senja are home Orcas, humpback and sperm whales, the world’s largest stock of cod spawn and one of Europe’s biggest nesting sites for seabirds. They are the last remaining marine areas in Norway off limits to the oil industry, which could change this year when the 20-year moratorium on drilling in the area expires.

“Despite repeated moratoriums and community resistance, the oil industry continues to push for access to these vulnerable areas and the oil and gas they contain. We are raising the alarm – Europe needs to free itself from fossil fuels, and the Norwegian government needs to protect pristine areas of the arctic from the destructive presence of oil and gas companies.”

Silje Lundberg, president, Friends of the Earth Norway

Almost one third of Europe’s gas comes from Norway, along with significant amounts of oil, at a time when Europe needs be moving away from fossil fuels [2]. Europe’s biggest oil and gas companies – Shell, BP, Total, Eni, and Repsol – are all active in Norway.

Friends of the Earth’s new campaign Fossil Free Europe is calling for a just transition to a 100% renewable, no nuclear, super energy-efficient, zero-fossil-fuel Europe.


For more information, please contact:

Colin Roche, Friends of the Earth Europe, Tel: +32 (0)2 893 1021 Email: colin.roche[at]

Helga Lerkelund, beacon coordinator, Friends of the Earth Norway, Tel: +47 99 424047 Email: hl[at]

[1] This is the 6th year that beacons have been lit in March in Norway, to raise awareness about the threat of the oil industry to the coastal areas off the arctic islands of Lofoten, Vesterålen and Senja.
[2] Norwegian Petroleum Directorate, 2015 figures

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