Greenpeace target Shell with Belgian GP protest

2013 Belgian Grand Prix

Greenpeace disrupted activities at the Belgian Grand Prix as they sought to draw attention to race sponsor Shell’s drilling practices.

Protesters unrolled a large banner in the main grandstand opposite the pits in the build-up to the race. Others were deployed by remote control during the podium ceremony, as shown in the video above.

According to the environmental organisation, two members of their 35-strong team were arrested after “subverting” a Shell advertising board at the Radillon corner. Other banners were displayed by paragliders before the start of the race.

Julia Ritschard of Swiss group said: “Shell has spent millions on this event, hoping to ride on the glory of the drivers and pretend it’s a company worthy of a spot on the podium.”

“But Shell has proven time and again that it will cut the most dangerous corners in the race to drill for oil as the Arctic ice melts away. So I’m here to let Formula One fans know what this company is really up to and make sure the truth of what Shell is doing in the Arctic is part of today’s race.”

2013 Belgian Grand Prix

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Image © Greenpeace

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163 comments on Greenpeace target Shell with Belgian GP protest

  1. Force Maikel (@force-maikel) said on 26th August 2013, 21:49

    Seeing as I once was almost assaulted by some people from Greenpeace just for expressing my love for F1 and my opinion on some of their environmental issues, I really have no respect for such a pointless, stupid and therefore idiotic action.

    The bit that cars pollute are just a shadow form what certain industries in China, India, Russia, the United States,… blow into the air. Why should we as Europeans, who for that matter are the most environmental aware of any on this earth pay the price for the countries I named.

    Like I said I have no love for Greenpeace as most of their activists are mindless and aggressive personalities that would prefer to send us back to the caveman era. Therefore I sincerely condemn this pointless action, which is completely aimed at the wrong persons, once again….

    • Andy said on 27th August 2013, 1:40

      Well put sir!

    • Mariano (@mariano) said on 28th August 2013, 1:16

      I agree with you 100%. There are many other organizattions concerned with enviromental issues whose attitude are firm and strong but not radical and agressive as Greenpeace. Violence generates more violence. The money that raises Greenpeace can be used to advertise their point of view legally in the media.

  2. sbl on tour (@sbl-on-tour) said on 26th August 2013, 22:34

    good to see them stick it to the man!
    the guy who had to take the signs down must have felt a right pratt, perhaps he should have just left it, probably bought more attention to the signs anyway

    always good to see someone getting the better of ecclestone, good on yer!

  3. JackySteeg (@jackysteeg) said on 26th August 2013, 23:06

    Wow. To be honest I thought nobody would really take notice of this protest, but there’s been quite a response on this article. If their goal was to make people aware of and get them thinking about Shell’s activities, then they’ve succeeded.

    Quite ironic really. The disapproving response from the crowd has probably drawn a lot more attention to the issue…

  4. Andy said on 27th August 2013, 1:37

    I understand that they’re trying to put across a message, but im not quite sure why greenpeace believe that they can display their advertisments free of charge…
    I’d also think that security breaches of this nature would require some kind of investigation and potentially stepped up security/procedures, which im sure will be reflected in ticket prices…

  5. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 27th August 2013, 13:48

    FOM had the original video taken down from YouTube, however Greenpeace have re-uploaded it elsewhere.

  6. andae23 (@andae23) said on 27th August 2013, 14:30

    Collected my thoughts on Greenpeace: I agree with their point of view, but I don’t get their act of protest. Shell is a minuscule part of the Belgian GP, so I don’t understand why they target a Grand Prix just to make a point with no clear relevance to this event. Yes, they are forced to resort to leeching off of these kind of events, but it doesn’t justify making a point that is not universally shared.

    One more thing I wanted to say RE the video they’ve uploaded: the video ends with “Embarrassing Shell on its biggest PR day of the year – priceless”. That’s not protesting, that’s bullying, which makes we wonder whether their objective is to raise awareness on the Shell problem, or just annoy Shell and have Greenpeace-followers laugh at Shell’s expense.

  7. robspan (@robspan) said on 27th August 2013, 18:38

    Actually we thought they were protesting against ticket prices…

    If we invest in a microlight, how much can we save at next year’s British GP, Glastonbury, etc ?

  8. Valhyre (@ausuma) said on 27th August 2013, 23:17

    You are sure giving them quite the article keith, lots of pictures and updated the video when the youtube one got deleted…

    • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 28th August 2013, 8:29

      @ausuma It’s not uncommon for articles on F1 Fanatic to be updated with more information and extra media in this way. A lot of the information has come out in dribs and drabs. I could have done separate articles for the videos and pictures but I think had I done that the story would have ended up occupying a disproportionate amount of space on the home page to the level of interest in it. Though having said that there has been more interest in this than I expected there would be.

  9. oakrichardson (@oakrichardson) said on 28th August 2013, 9:26

    i was sat at the bus stop chicane and had no idea this was going on! Even during the podium ceremony it wasn’t that obvious! it was only when we walked along the pit straight we noticed the banner opposite the pits, but even then I didn’t really think much of it. Cant imagine that FOM or whoever had to do much to cover this up.

  10. BNKracing said on 28th August 2013, 12:45

    Well i would have been ****** off if i paid for those grandstand seats and a big banner was blocking my view of the track! And then even more ****** off because they had better seats than me …for FREE! loll

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