The East Africa Pipeline runs from Uganda's landlocked oil fields to Tanga seaport in Tanzania. Source EACOP website, fair use, low resolution image to identify the subject.

Climate Activist European Companies Rushing to Exploit African Oil

Essay by Eric Worrall

Given climate champion President Biden recently begged Saudi and Venezuela to produce more oil, and Europeans are restarting coal generators, why are activists angry at companies extracting African oil?

An African Oil Pipeline Exposes the West’s Climate Change Hypocrisy

Sophie Neiman

In March, four environmentalist groups—Greenpeace FranceFriends of the Earth FranceNotre Affaire a Tous and Client Earth—launched an unprecedented legal case, charging the French oil giant TotalEnergies with what amounts to “criminal greenwashing.” Their 76-page summons claimed that the company had misled consumers by broadcasting its supposed ambitions of reaching net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, even as it ramped up overseas oil and gas activities.

Just one month before the suit was filed in Paris, TotalEnergies had reached a $10 billion final investment decision to back an infamous oil project: the behemoth East Africa Crude Oil Pipeline, or EACOP, which is set to be the longest heated oil pipeline in the world. Once completed, the pipeline will run 900 miles, connecting the Lake Albert region in Uganda’s west to the Port of Tanga in Tanzania’s east, ripping through farmlands and displacing thousands of families along the way. The project also involves developing Lake Albert’s Tilenga oilfield with hundreds of new wells that will spread from residential areas into protected animal habitats in Uganda’s famed Murchison Falls National Park.

More than 70 countries around the world—including major polluters such as the United States, China and members of the European Union—have pledged to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. A key aspect of these agreements is to cut off all new fossil fuel development projects after 2030. In light of those pledges, EACOP and its associated drilling projects have come to symbolize how Western companies and governments promote green practices within their own borders while continuing to support dangerous extractive projects abroad.

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Activists have also targeted London based Lloyds Insurance, seeking to “educate” Lloyds employees about climate change, over their involvement in the pipeline.

In my opinion the real hypocrites are the climate activists. Most of them live lifestyles which are only possible because they live in fossil fuel rich economies. Activists enjoy the benefits of oil produced in the own and other countries, yet they seem wildly opposed to Africans developing their own oil resources, and any attempt to build the infrastructure Africa requires to modernise.

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Michael in Dublin
August 17, 2022 2:37 am

I would like to see these activists having to live even for a single week in Africa like the locals say in a country like Zimbabwe. They will of course deny that the situation is in any way linked to the Marxist system Robert Mugabe imposed and blame white colonists.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
August 17, 2022 3:58 am

Henry Kissinger was the final arbiter for what was done to destroy Rhodesia. He told BJ Vorster to remove all support for the Smith government and he did. White liberals played a small part but American geopolitics was an irresistible force. The same thing has now happened to South Africa.

Quite how the removal of competent administrations to replace them with incompetent socialist lunatics helps the US is unclear but there it is.

Reply to  Keitho
August 17, 2022 5:03 am

Denying “third world” countries the means of reaching first world living standards is a crime against humanity.

Reply to  pochas94
August 17, 2022 10:05 am

A pipeline to remove the oil from Africa might, I suppose, help raise funds within Africa so the general public can buy back finished products from abroad but history seems to say there is little chance of it helping the people at large, even in the countries that have oil to be exploited.

Michael in Dublin
Reply to  AndyHce
August 17, 2022 12:16 pm

The daughter of a previous president of oil rich Angola became the richest woman in Africa but is facing charges of fraud.

Richard Page
Reply to  Michael in Dublin
August 17, 2022 3:44 pm

The fact that she was charged at all is a hopeful sign. Most of the time the ‘charges’ are a way of extorting bribes and are dropped immediately after payment. Angola has become a little more serious about the rampant corruption in recent years.

Reply to  Keitho
August 17, 2022 9:09 am

I guess America will probably find out in the next two years if the upcoming election doesn’t change things around. So far, I’m not liking it too much.

Richard Page
Reply to  Keitho
August 18, 2022 8:01 am

Was that a rhetorical question?
A united and strong federation of competent African countries, such as in the 55-member African Union, would be competition to the USA. If the USA can keep them as disorganised customers rather than organised competition then there is more money to be made from the situation. It’s not a great idea, as Somalia (and others) will attest, but it keeps USA slightly ahead of the game (just).

Reply to  Keitho
August 18, 2022 6:25 pm

HK = AH, same folks

August 17, 2022 2:53 am

A prosperous Africas? What would all the NGOs etc do?

Reply to  fretslider
August 17, 2022 5:06 am

The USA. We are rapidly approaching 3rd world status

Reply to  Buckeyebob
August 17, 2022 5:19 am

I hate to say it, but….

Better call Saul.

Gary Pearse
Reply to  fretslider
August 17, 2022 12:22 pm

NGOs have been blocking investment and development since independence of African colonies in the early 1960s. I worked in Nigeria for the Geological Survey in the middle 1960s and I recall buying rice scooped from a large cardboard drum at the marketplace with the a label: A Gift to the People of Nigeria from Oxfam! The only development here was for the economy of the family of the Minister of Transport. Before long NGOs were harassing mining companies, training activists … and now they are raging against Africans accessing resources to develop themselves.

john harmsworth
Reply to  Gary Pearse
August 17, 2022 12:50 pm

It’s a sick little ecosystem. The Un and NGO’s should be kicked out but the rulers won’t kick out the NGO’s because they keep the bribe money coming. The NGO’s are fed by Western activists and the UN with the real purpose of keeping the people poor and dependent. The green development push is financed but useless in real terms. Only the poverty is real.

August 17, 2022 3:04 am

Pulling up the drawbridge.

John Garrett
August 17, 2022 3:38 am

Sorry, Mr. Worrall, but the real miscreants are the spineless, craven managers of Royal Dutch Shell, Total, BP, ExxonMobil, Chevron et al who are attempting to appease the climate crackpots.

By kowtowing to the climate nutters instead of confronting them, the spineless, craven managers have placed themselves in an untenable intellectual position. They have no one to blame other than themselves.

Reply to  John Garrett
August 17, 2022 4:24 am

Started with John Brown at British Petroleum. Oh! Sorry! I mean Beyond Petroleum. What a cupid stunt.

August 17, 2022 3:36 pm

I worked in the corporate signage industry in the late 80’s.

The head of BP at the time announced in the business press “we will own the colour green” (paraphrasing)

Reply to  John Garrett
August 17, 2022 5:37 am


Reply to  John Garrett
August 17, 2022 8:07 am

Didn’t griff tell us that the fact that Africa doesn’t have an energy infrastructure is proof that they don’t want or need one.

john harmsworth
Reply to  MarkW
August 17, 2022 12:52 pm

Must be the same thing when they don’t have food. Just don’t want it! Like when Griff has no sense.

Dave Fair
Reply to  John Garrett
August 18, 2022 10:42 am

Hoping you will be the last one eaten by the alligator.

August 17, 2022 5:19 am

Greentards are always angry at someone else, when they should look at themselves.

August 17, 2022 5:23 am

What did they expect from Total, the master of cheating and sanction end runs.

August 17, 2022 5:40 am

“Unprecedented” “ramped up” “infamous” “ripping through” “displacing” “protected animal habitats” “major polluters” “dangerous extractive projects”

Sophie Newman: Yet another “unbiased” reporter providing objective “news” coverage. An English major at a NY elite women’s college with a newly minted MA in African studies from Cambridge, this twenty-something kid doesn’t even reveal her credentials on her own website. Just a photo of a white woman sipping tea while reporting on black Africa.

Reply to  Pflashgordon
August 17, 2022 7:23 am

“Unprecedented” “ramped up” “infamous” “ripping through” “displacing” “protected animal habitats” “major polluters” “dangerous extractive projects”

Now do windmills and solar farms.

Mark Whitney
August 17, 2022 5:45 am

Mindless and in a frenzy is the natural progressive state of existence.

It doesn't add up...
August 17, 2022 5:50 am

Gives a new meaning to “put a tiger in your tank”

Reply to  It doesn't add up...
August 17, 2022 8:09 am
It doesn't add up...
Reply to  MarkW
August 17, 2022 10:23 am

It was an ad slogan used by the Esso brand a while back…

Reply to  It doesn't add up...
August 17, 2022 11:20 am

Went right over your head I see.

It doesn't add up...
Reply to  MarkW
August 17, 2022 1:47 pm

I understood your inversion (and perhaps implications of military intervention on behalf of big oil), but was unsure if you lived through the era of the Esso ads.

Richard Page
Reply to  It doesn't add up...
August 17, 2022 3:50 pm

I did and may I just say that the esso tiger was a damned sight more reliable than the Pz VI Tiger I.

August 17, 2022 6:49 am

Looks to me like the problem
was the company’s suicidal commitment to achieving net zero by 2050.

Maybe energy companies should stop losing at the empty virtue signaling ESG game and just be unapologetic energy companies.

August 17, 2022 6:56 am

Noble savages and all.

Richard Page
Reply to  DeNihilist
August 18, 2022 8:03 am

Ah the cornerstone of modern green colonialism.

August 17, 2022 7:47 am

All the governments want to do is appease the activists so they will lower their voice. It’s obvious to all that we are creating an energy shortage and the elite know all the virtue signaling in the world will not produce electricity. The Marxist plan to control energy is well under way and if we don’t stand up to them we will all be ‘third world’.

Dave Andrews
August 17, 2022 9:32 am

By the end of this century world population is expected to grow to 10.9 billion (UN projection) and more than 8 in 10 people alive will live in Asia and Africa. Africa is the fastest growing continent and its share of world population will rise from 17% to 40%.

The priority for Asia and Africa is to improve the lives of their peoples and the easiest way for them to do that is by using fossil fuels just like the developed countries did for their populations. They are not going to buy into net zero just because our politicians have.

Reply to  Dave Andrews
August 17, 2022 9:56 am

Tyrants will buy into net zero if the money is paid to the right people. Africa and Asia are not known as bastions of piety. Then again, who is.

Paul Johnson
August 17, 2022 9:55 am

The implication is that Africans are not capable of recognizing their own best interests. White Western elites seek to force them into the “correct” decisions for their future by virtue of their moral and intellectual superiority. It’s the Woke Man’s Burden.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Paul Johnson
August 18, 2022 10:46 am

Great play on words, Paul. Wish I had thought of it.

Walter Sobchak
August 17, 2022 11:02 am

Racism is the beating heart of warmunism. They must deprive brown people of all agency over their own affairs.

Reply to  Walter Sobchak
August 17, 2022 11:21 am

Racism is the beating heart of socialism, which is the beating heart of warmunism.

Walter Sobchak
Reply to  MarkW
August 17, 2022 11:54 am

They were racists before they were socialists or warmunists.

Thoroughly documented in: Illiberal Reformers: Race, Eugenics, and American Economics in the Progressive Era Hardcover – by Thomas C. Leonard (2016)

August 17, 2022 11:46 am

if I remember right Africa used to be called ‘The Dark Contient’
pretty much looks like these activists & elites are working overtime
to keep it that way, albeit in real time not just in name

August 17, 2022 11:59 am

900 mile pipeline. Must be a nice oil field.

Andy Pattullo
August 17, 2022 2:59 pm

Whatever happened to the global search for an emission-free, Earth-friendly, equity/diversity/inclusivity inducing and renewable source of unicorn farts? Oh yeah – the PETA folks wouldn’t get on board. I guess we’re back to pure magic as our only reliable source of energy. Gandalf where are you?

“One ring to rule them all, one ring to find them, One ring to bring them all, and in the darkness bind them; In the Land of Mordor where the shadows lie.”

Clearly Tolkien was writing about the rise of the dark forces of environmentalism and the ring is symbolic of “net-zero”.

August 17, 2022 9:44 pm

How can someone be sued for not meeting a pledge?

Richard Page
Reply to  Bob
August 18, 2022 8:08 am

Especially when they don’t have to make good on that pledge until 2050. If you walked into a bank for a loan and they immediately took you to court for non-payment before even issuing the loan that bank would be laughed out of court and out of business within a few weeks. It’s insane.

Dave Fair
Reply to  Richard Page
August 18, 2022 10:50 am

Well, the highest Dutch court told Shell it had to reduce its suppliers and customers’ CO2 emissions as well as its own. Aren’t vague laws a boon to Leftist agitators.

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