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#FreeFromGas Guerrilla Projections

Since June 2022, the Artivist Network has been training and supporting grassroots climate activist groups across Europe in the organization and execution of decentralized guerrilla projection actions that aim to challenge dominant pro-gas narratives and dismantle the gas industry's outsize power in Europe. The “guerrilla projection” is an interventionist tool that offers a low-cost and highly visible way for small groups to repurpose public space for high-impact protest. By using this creative protest tactic, our goal is to visibilize the many dangers of fossil gas and the urgent need for a swift transition away from fossil fuel dependence in Europe. We are demanding a Europe #FreeFromGas - and ALL fossil fuels. The campaign gives particular focus to building strategic and contextualized responses to the rapidly changing political landscape created by the energy crisis and the war in Ukraine. Autonomy is left to local groups around specific targets, narratives, and objectives in order to encourage groups to shape this project to best support local campaigning goals. At the same time, we are providing them with action design support, projection equipment, sample projection content, media support, and training sessions (both online and offline).

Budapest, Hungary, June 2022: 

 

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The first training and guerrilla projection action was held in Budapest, Hungary, in June 2022 with the participation of fourteen art and climate activists from Central, Eastern, and Southern Europe. The multiday training included sessions on the importance of fighting gas in the climate movement, using a projector and video mapping software, action logic and planning, and strategies for effective communication and media outreach. The accompanying practice action was carried out in support of the #NotMyTaxonomy campaign, a Europe-wide mobilization that aimed to publicly pressure members of the European Parliament to vote against the inclusion of gas and nuclear in the EU taxonomy on sustainable finance. The training and practice action prepared participating activists to organize and carry out their own guerrilla projections against gas over the following months.

Mediaş (Romgaz HQ), Romania, July, 2022: 

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In the middle of a rainy summer night in Medias, Romania, a group of climate activists from Gastivists Romania and Fridays For Future Romania beamed protest slogans like “No More Gas” and “Black Sea + Romgaz = Dead Sea” onto the headquarters of Romgaz, the largest fossil gas extraction company in the country. The action denounced the company’s shortsighted and destructive efforts to explore and drill for more fossil gas in the Black Sea, and in particular, the proposed Neptun Deep project, which the company and the national government justify as being necessary to reduce Russian gas imports. The activists demanded that Romgaz admit that the fossil fuel era has come to end and stressed that all gas extraction fuels climate chaos, war, and militarization. They also expressed solidarity with the gas industry workers, underscoring that Romgaz has the moral responsibility to ensure that its workers transition into truly sustainable and green jobs of the future.

Warsaw (Copernicus Center of Science), Poland, August, 2022:

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The Bombelki Collective, with visuals designed by Tajny Projekt, projected onto the Copernicus Centre of Science along the banks of the Vistula River. The action protested the Polish gas transmission system operator, Gaz-System, and its plans to install a floating LNG terminal in the Port of Gdansk. The activists used Warsaw’s famous science museum as a backdrop to highlight the stark contrast between climate science and the shortsighted business interests of Gaz-System. The action focused on how new LNG infrastructure would lock Poland into decades of more methane and carbon dioxide emissions and divert much-needed resources from a truly just and green energy transition for Poland. The activists also sought to expose the false industry narrative that gas is a cheap and stable fuel source for the Polish people and how corporations such as Gaz System cause suffering and death: crimes that are considered a side-product of their business model. They also stand in solidarity with Ukraine, highlighting that gas is a geopolitical instrument. The current energy crisis and Putin’s war in Ukraine has demonstrated just how vulnerable gas is to the volatility of global fossil-fuel markets and geopolitical conflict.