Education, mobilisation and control – these are few of the main themes that have been attached to our campaign since its inception in 2012. Our initiative concentrates on the activists and organisations who represent local communities in meetings with the authorities and act as spokesmen for said communities, presenting their stances and affairs.
The participation of citizens and their control over issuing environmental decisions concerning the search and exploitation of shale gas are of paramount importance, as any one of us will feel the effects of such investments in some way. If the authorities acknowledge only the needs of investors or decision makers, but not the wider spectrum of citizens, then it can result in executing investments that will be, on the ecological level, burdensome for local communities – whether it will come from increased intensity of heavy vehicle traffic, pollution, overexploiation of water, noise or gas emissions.
The basis of our actions lies in monitoring – defensive actions and advocacy.
We monitor everything that is happening around the issue of shale gas in Poland, like legislative processes, constantly changing laws or other investments. We want to increase the awareness of citizens and decision makers on the topic of water supply protection during the search, discovery and extraction of shale gas, as well as the topic of importance of the dialogue between all involved parties. We have already conducted a number of meetings with local communities, mining companies, scientists and decision makers.
We released a book called "Citizens control – a fighting communities' guide" ("Obywatele kontrolują – poradnik walczących społeczności"). We published two reports that summarise leading projects – "Shale gas – a challenge for democracy" ("Gaz łupkowy – wyzwanie dla demokracji") and "Water or gas?" ("Woda czy gaz?"). The latter publication contains "A Citizen Book of Water Management Policy" (" Obywatelska Księga Polityki Gospodarowania Wodami") that contains recommendations for the legislative power concerning effective protection of water supplies in Poland.
We have also conducted legal analysis of the implementation of the Water Framework Directive (Ramowa Dyrektywa Wodna) and the Special Hydrocarbonic Act (Specustawa Węglowodorowa), which we have forwarded to the Prime Minister, all of the deputies, senators and Ministers of Environment, Economy and Treasury.