Leader of the Green party Trevor Sargent and the Mayor of Galway, Niall O’Brolchain are to hold a ceremony in Galway to congratulate Rossport Five campaigner Willie Corduff on his recent receipt of the Goldman Prize for the Environment. They will meet with Willie this Thursday 10th May at 12.00 outside St Nicholas’s Church and all are welcome to attend.
The Goldman prize is internationally renowned. It is the equivalent of a Nobel Prize for the environment. Willie was awarded the €93,000 prize in a ceremony in San Francisco two weeks ago. During his US trip he had the opportunity to put his case to leading US political figures. It was awarded in recognition of the Shell to Sea Campaign, which opposes the controversial ‘Corrib Gas’ project in Erris Co. Mayo.
This project, should it go ahead, threatens the community, lifestyle, safety and environment of his native Erris peninsula. Along with many other members of his community Willie has seen his opposition to Shell E&P Ireland’s proposed on shore high-pressure pipeline lead him into situations he could never have imagined. With with four others, he was jailed for over ninety days for contempt of court for refusing to comply with an injunction granted to Shell E&P Ireland.
Even before the receipt of this international accolade Willie and the people of Erris have been the subject of films, a book and media coverage ranging from the BBC to Al Jazeera. The Rossport Five have also won the RTE Radio Ones Tubridy show ‘people of the year award’ which was voted by the audience. The community’s resolute struggle against a faceless multinational has provided inspiration to many.
Galway’s Mayor Niall O’Brolchain has been vocal on the plight of the people of Erris and along with other respected Galway politicians has commented on the need to gain the consent of residents in projects such as this.