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    Greenpeace dubs BP 'British Polluters' over oil spill

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    British Greenpeace activists unfurled a mock BP logo at the oil major's corporate headquarters in London on Thursday following the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

    British Greenpeace activists unfurled a mock BP logo at the oil major's corporate headquarters in London on Thursday following the recent oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

    On a big flag the protesters covered the official logo - described by BP as "a sunburst of green, yellow and white" - with an oil spill and added the inscription "British Polluters."

    "We reckon a company that invests in tar sands - the dirtiest oil there is - needs something other than a nice green flower as their brand identity," Greenpeace said on its website.

    An explosion in April on the Deepwater Horizon oil drilling platform about 80 kilometers (50 miles) off the Louisiana coast caused a major oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. The blast claimed the lives of 11 people who were working on the rig and injured other 17. The rig sunk two days later, with oil continuing to spill into the sea.

    The Gulf of Mexico, which hosts some 4,000 drilling platforms, is home to many endangered animal species and the accident is a major threat to the Gulf's flora and fauna.

    "As a result of the oil spill into the sea, heavy elements of fuel oil will settle on the seabed and cause an ecological catastrophe," said Vladimir Chuprov, the head of the Greenpeace Russia's energy department.

    He accused multinational oil companies of hiding behind slogans to avoid following genuinely environmentally friendly policies.

    "Social and environmental responsibility is more about image and PR than of the corporate policy," Chuprov said. "If this concerns a top oil giant, it is terrible to imagine what happens in smaller oil-producing companies, including Russian ones."

    Chuprov said Russian oil-producers are notorious for environmental breaches and damage caused by oil spills.

    He added that Greenpeace's protests cannot solve problems on their own, but are aimed at attracting authorities' attention to the most burning issues.

    Russia saw one of the world's most severe ecological disasters in 1994 in Russia's northern Komi Republic, when an explosion caused 100,000 tons of oil to spill from the Haryaga-Usinsk pipeline. The accident was put into the Guinness Book of World Records as the largest onshore oil leak.

    MOSCOW, May 20 (RIA Novosti by Anastasia Markitan) 

     

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