In September 2015 Emma Thompson joined a group of 64 Greenpeace activists and a double decker bus-sized model of a polar bear as they tried to stop Shell drilling for oil in the Arctic. The paw carried the names of thousands of people who stand for Arctic.
They placed the giant bear outside Shell’s HQ in London.
Emma broke a legal injunction aimed at stopping Greenpeace activists from crossing a line drawn around the South Bank Building saying: “I feel that they long ago crossed a very big line by going into the Arctic so until they back off I’ll cross their line whenever I want”.
“Shell haven’t been listening. Shell have ignored the science. They want to drill in the Arctic up to the year 2030. It seems to me a monumental act of selfishness and greed. We cannot go on extracting oil in the way that we have” she said.
Standing next to Aurora, the giant polar bear, which roared at intervals after the northern lights, Emma Thompson read out a poem she had written specifically for the protests.
After the protests Shell decided to pull out of drilling in the Arctic saying that they ceased exploration in the region after failing to find sufficient signs of oil and gas but the truth is that Shell had suffered huge reputation damage with protests around the world.
Greenpeace said more than seven million people signed up to the Save The Arctic campaign worldwide, so the company abandoned drilling in the Arctic.