During the night of July 13th to 14th, 2017, Forces Écosocialistes [Ecosocialist Forces] took action by arsoning the equipment of the oil company Squatex, located in Bas-St-Laurent. An article describing the act was first published by Radio-Canada, then republished by Mtlcounter-info and finally by Earthfirst. The events were described as “suspicious”, to use the exact wording of the police and the journalist.
Two months have now passed since this attack against the oil company. And it’s in the current context of increased resistance to fossil fuel development on Québécois soil that we decide to affirm the volontary and thought-out character of the action. Our claim arrives, then, following the occupation of the company Junex’s Galt site and numerous banner drops on university campuses. Admirable individuals are rising to affirm their will to expel this oil industry garbage from the territory and we want to commend their courage and determination. We also want to insist on one point: alongside Junex there are other active companies that are just as destructive.
Squatex’s development site consisted of four principal structures. The flames spared just one, containing only certain metal equipment like pipes and other non-flammable objects. The other structures were: a lift truck, the drilling container, and a trailer connected to a water reservoir. They were all doused in gasoline and lit on fire. The pictures available on the Radio-Canada article attest to the success of our action. The spared structure allowed us to write the name of our group in black paint: Forces Écosocialistes [Ecosocialist Forces]. Three separate structures burning simultaneously with a tag well in sight: “suspicious” indeed.
Isn’t it ironic to destroy the oil company with the very substance it wants to put to market? Let’s at least say that if this dirty energy wasn’t available, we wouldn’t have had to destroy it. Like capitalism, it creates the weapons that will provoke its fall.
Many projects are now in progress in Bas-St-Laurent and Gaspésie. The most popular among them is without doubt that of Junex near Gaspé. However, there are other, lesser known projects that equally deserve special attention. That of Squatex – the structures have not yet been repaired, but the company still has the permits – in the Mitis MRC or that of Petrolympic which is coveting the ZEC BSL.
Estimates sent to Radio-Canada by Mario Lévesque, lobbyist and pig in chief of Squatex, suggest that there are potentially 52 million barrels of oil buried in Bas-St-Laurent. There’s lots to make the capitalists salivate and lots of reasons to prepare the resistance.
Certain voices spoke out against the Petrolympic project. First, the ZEC board of administrators fiercely opposed the presence of the oil company. Then, certain indigenous groups also had their say. The mayors of the municipalities of the MRC also took a position against the project. Since then there has been no news, and Petrolympic remains silent as to its intentions. We need to be on guard.
We, as activists, believe in a diversity of tactics. Consequently, we give equal value to occupations, banner drops, and direct actions like the one we proudly carried out. For what it’s worth, we wish to insist on our unconditional support for the anti-oil and pro-environment movement that we all help create.
So Junexit and Squatexit too! Let’s tell Petrolympic: get out! Forces Écosocialistes will work to preserve the environment and will continue affirming that green capitalism, or sustainable development tied to economic growth, is an oxymoron as well as unrealistic, a lie of the ruling class. Open respect for biodiversity, the protection of the climate and natural environments, and the struggle around the various environmental issues can be realized only with the departure of capitalism. And against oil, we will need to target all of our enemies.