Check air quality in your neighborhood

LIVE: ‘Kayaktivists’ take to water to block Polar Pioneer as oil platform leaves port, arrests made

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.


SEATTLE – Anti-Shell Oil activists took to the waters of Elliott Bay Monday morning, to try and blockade the “Polar Pioneer” rig platform as it moved from Elliott Bay.

Thirteen protesters got into kayaks and headed toward the oil rig that’s been at Terminal 5 on Harbor Island, according to a press release from Greenpeace.

“The activists have secured themselves in place with enough supplies to last for hours while additional protests take place on shore,” Greenpeace said.

Seattle Police and US Coast Guard are monitoring the situation. By 7:10 a.m., at least 10 activists had been detained by the U.S. Coast Guard.

This is a developing story and will be updated in our live blog below.

WATCH LIVE: A Greenpeace sponsored live stream of the protest from the water. 

Travis Mayfield June 15, 20156:27 AM

Travis Mayfield June 15, 20156:27 AM

Travis Mayfield June 15, 20156:27 AM

Travis Mayfield June 15, 20156:30 AM

Travis Mayfield June 15, 20156:32 AM

Travis Mayfield June 15, 20156:32 AM

Travis Mayfield June 15, 20156:33 AM

Live Periscope stream:

Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:35 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:36 AM

It appears that the kayaktivists are being approached by police right now>>>

Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:45 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:46 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:46 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:50 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:50 AM

We’re hearing chatter that Councilmember Mike O’Brien is out with the protesters. This is not confirmed.

Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:51 AM

Here’s the Greenpeace Press Release on the story — SEATTLE, WA, June 15, 2015— Thirteen activists in kayaks have blockaded Shell’s Arctic drilling rig the Polar Pioneer as it attempted to leave Seattle’s Puget Sound. The Greenpeace activists have secured themselves in place with enough supplies to last for hours while additional protests take place on shore. Shell plans to use the Polar Pioneer to drill for oil in the Alaskan Arctic in less than two weeks.

Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:52 AM

Greenpeace representatives say a “rough estimate” of 12 people have been arrested.

Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:55 AM

We’re hearing that the activists are taking “one last shot” to block the rig, heading within 500 yards of the Polar Pioneer. Watch it live here —

Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:55 AM

“Mom if you’re watching, I love you,” activists.

Brett Cihon June 15, 20156:59 AM

The activists in charge of the Greenpeace Live Feed has been detained by police. Watch live here —

Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:00 AM

That is a Greenpeace stream. 

Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:00 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:00 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:01 AM

We are hearing there have been 10 arrests by the U.S. Coastguard, including Seattle City Councilmember Mike O’Brien.

Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:03 AM

An activist is live streaming after being detained —

Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:05 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:06 AM

“There’s probably a dozen kayaks still in the water,” heard from the U.S. Coast Guard on the Greenpeace Live Stream.

Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:09 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:11 AM

According to one #ShellNo protester, at least 8 activists have been “detained” by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:12 AM

More from a GreenPeace press release —

Annie Leonard, the Executive Director of Greenpeace US, said,“Shell wants to haul its 40,000 ton Arctic destroyer to Alaska as soon as possible, but these courageous individuals are saying, ‘Shell No.’  Every minute that brave protesters can delay Shell’s Arctic drilling plans is another chance for President Obama to reconsider his disastrous approval of oil drilling in Alaska. The President’s decision on Arctic drilling will be a dealbreaker for his climate legacy, but it’s not too late for him to stop this catastrophe before it starts.”

In April, six activists intercepted the same oil rig in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, 750 miles north-west of Hawaii and scaled the 40,000 ton platform, occupying the rig for nearly a week.  Since then, there has been a broad movement in Seattle and beyond to stop Shell’s rigs from leaving for the Arctic, including a protest of several thousand people, 500 on kayaks.

Paloma Henriques, one of the kayaktivists in the blockade, said: “I’m just one voice out here, but I know I’m not alone. I believe that confronting Shell will encourage more people to take a strong stand against them and other companies who are seeking to destroy this planet for profit. We are here to send a message to President Obama that it’s not too late to stop Shell from destroying the Arctic.”

In May, the Obama administration approved Shell’s plan to drill for oil in the Chukchi Sea in the Alaskan Arctic. Since that approval, both Shell’s rigs, the Polar Pioneer and the Noble Discoverer have failed routine inspections.

The Noble Discoverer is one of the oldest drill ships in the world. In December 2014, Noble Drilling, one of Shell’s biggest Arctic sub-contractors and owner of the Noble Discoverer, pleaded guilty to eight felonies related to Shell’s failed attempts to drill in the Arctic Ocean in 2012.

“We are grateful and stand with the protesters in Seattle who are determined to stop Arctic Drilling before it starts. Shell’s Arctic venture is seriously reckless. This company has no capability to address an oil spill in unpredictable ice conditions and has proven in previous attempts that they are not equipped for the harsh and volatile conditions of the Chukchi Sea,” said Faith Gemmill, Executive Director of Resisting Environmental Destruction on Indigenous Lands.

“The future of the Inupiat way of life is on the table, how can this company be so callous with their decisions?  Not only is Shell’s plans risky, but also detrimental to all Alaska Natives that share the burden of current climate chaos,” Gemmill said. “We stand with those that want to protect their Inupiat ancestral way of life, and we will continue to support them facing down this giant, we call on all those of conscience to raise their voice in opposition to this insane venture now”

In an environmental analysis, the Obama administration predicts 75 percent chance of a major oil spill if Shell develops its leases in the Chukchi Sea.

Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:15 AM
Brett Cihon June 15, 20157:30 AM

We’re going to archive this live blog, as it appears most of the protesters have been detained. Head to this story for more information>>> 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


  • Magnus

    Blockading? Isn’t this turning into a form of harassment for Shell? By forming this blockade, how many other businesses are being impacted?

  • Randy C.

    The hypocrites are at it again! Running around protesting an oil rig while they are the reason it’s here in the first place. How many of them are driving cars that are fueled by the products of this machine? You have no right to protest against an object with your front side while funding the object with your backside! Drive electric cars and make the whole damn thing go away.

  • d_2

    If you’re not floating out in one of these: You’re a complete hypocrite! Hey, even a local company… Then when complete, they’ll stack them on a trailer pulled by a full-size Ford Van with a gas guzzling V10. Hell… my Diesel burns cleaner and gets better gas mileage than that POS.

  • "peety"

    remember when pro slavery groups called the anti slavery groups ‘hypocrites” for wearing cotton? Being against Arctic drilling and owning a Kayak does not make you a hypocrite unless you get your news from Glenn Beck

  • Franklin " Dozer" S.

    Ya, lets all get out a protest in our plastic kayaks and canoes… oh wait, are those things not made of oil? Can we spell H-Y-P-O-C-R-I-T-E, boys and girls? If you’re going to protest something, at least don’t use something made of it; unless, everyone uses say, ‘thrown away water bottles’ that are built into said boats or rafts. Then people might start paying attention to your childish fits.

          • d_2

            I know buddy… while not referring to the combustion engine on their oil based kayak; there is one in their transport vehicle. C’mon man, I know ignorance is bliss, but man up and recognize the facts. (I don’t expect you to do so however)

  • karma

    LOL the feeble protest with oil based boats oil burning transport drinking processed water in an oil based container and wearing clothing made oil byproducts.
    Meanwhile a protest with ZERO effect on the oil rig and the maintenance performed on it. I thank these morons on the water for boosting the security and creating more
    jobs with USCG, Port police, Seattle traffic control, Seattle Marine division and Tug Support and its not just the guys on the ground doing the work there’s planning sessions
    and logistics involved with each.
    Not to mention all the overtime work that the repair crews (welders, electricians, ship workers ect) More money for LOCALS to buy goods and services and I’ll bet some of the
    morons on the water own or sell something in the local area. So protest all you want and thanks for the laughs.