24 September 2017
The campaign “Autarquias Livres de Petróleo e Gás” (Fossil-Free Municipalities) presented the campaign results last Saturday. A total of 81 candidates for the town hall pledged to “do all they can to make their municipalities free from oil and gas extraction.”
Eighteen organizations and collectives joined forces to push forward the fossil-free agenda in the upcoming local elections. In the last months, the campaign contacted 261 candidates from 58 municipalities affected by oil and gas concessions. The fact that the contact information for the candidates is not easily accessible caused some technical difficulties during the process. However, the campaign was successful in contacting more that 80% of the candidates.
One week ahead of the election (October 1st), the campaign announced 81 pledges in 44 municipalities by 10 political parties. These pledges represent 25% of all the candidates and 28% of the contacts the campaign made. Particularly worrisome are the absence of pledges in some of the municipalities (namely, Alvaiázere, Ansião, Batalha, Cantanhede, Espinho, Lourinhã, Mira, Monchique, Murtosa, Ourém, Peniche, Porto de Mós, São Brás de Alportel and Soure), as well as the absence of pledges by CDU (PCP-PEV coalition). Until the eve of the elections, the campaign will continue to accept pledges via email and update the map (accessible at autarquiaslivresdepetroleo.pt.) accordingly.
The organizations involved in the campaign pledged to continue the struggle against fossil fuel projects in Portugal until all the contracts are cancelled and the country enters into a just energy transition away from fossil fuels.