Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe has defended Shell’s seismic surveys, accusing opponents of wanting to deny Africa growth.
Mantashe and the Petroleum Agency of South Africa briefed the media on Thursday on developments in oil and gas.
Mantashe said seismic surveys had been undertaken for decades globally in search of oil and gas.
He has questioned why environmentalists are suddenly opposing it when it’s done in South Africa.
“Could it be possible that this is an extreme pure love for the environment or an unrelenting campaign to ensure that Africa and South Africa do not see the investment inflows they need?”
He has detailed the mitigation measures before seismic operations are conducted.
“Should there be a marine animal species that enter the 500-metre exclusion zone, operations are halted.”
Mantashe said South Africa deserved the opportunity to capitalise on its natural resources without objection.
“I cannot help but ask, are these objections meant to ensure the status quo remains in Africa, in general, and South Africa, in particular? That is, the status quo with regards to energy poverty, high unemployment, high debt to GDP ratio at country level & economies that are not growing…”
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