'Requiem for Arctic Ice': Fight Against Shell Crescendos with Musical Protest

Shell employees arriving to work at the corporation’s London headquarters on Monday morning were greeted by the soaring strains of a musical protest, as a string orchestra performed the Greenpeace-commissioned “Requiem for Arctic Ice” to mark the first day of a month-long protest outside oil giant’s UK offices.

“This protest is about reaching into the hearts of Shell employees, and asking them to help Shell avert disaster,” said Mel Evans, the protest’s artistic director.

The fossil fuel company is on the verge of beginning an exploitative and profit-driven oil-drilling operation in the Alaskan Arctic, one that climate justice advocates warn will raise carbon emissions while endangering a pristine ecosystem that native communities rely on for their sustenance and heritage.

Monday’s “Requiem” is the second creative direct action Shell has faced in as many weeks, coming on the heels of a people-powered blockade in Portland, Oregon that successfully—if temporarily—stopped Shell’s massive Fennica icebreaker from leaving port on its way to the Arctic. 

Click Here: All Blacks Rugby Jersey


A statement from the London-based Crystal Palace String Quartet, founded by graduates of Britain’s top music colleges, explained further:

Supporters can “amplify the music” online, by signing petitions or taking steps on social media.

“I wanted to be involved with this project because I think words and images of vanishing nature can only say so much,” said one participating musician. “Sometimes only music will do. We have lost much wildness already—the loss is hidden from plain sight, but it still is a loss we all feel, or will feel at some time, even if we can’t recognise it. These pieces are a beautiful requiem for the 59,300 square kilometres of Arctic sea ice lost each year, as well as a reminder of all we have yet to lose, all we have to save.”

Our work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 License. Feel free to republish and share widely.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *