The Greenpeace activists who scaled Russia's first Arctic offshore oil rig during a September demonstration have been given amnesty, but Russia is extending no such courtesies to the Arctic environment or the climate.
The rig that the Arctic 30 helped bring to the world's attention has begun pumping oil. From Agence France-Presse:
The landmark announcement marked the formal start of Russia’s long-planned effort to turn the vast oil and natural gas riches believed to be buried in the frozen waters into profits for its ambitious government-run firms. But it also outraged campaigners who see the Arctic as one of the world’s last pristine reserves whose damage by oil spills and other disasters would be enormously difficult to contain. [State-owned oil company] Gazprom made its announcement in a statement that stressed the company also had rights to 29 other fields it planned to exploit in Russia’s section of the Arctic seabed. ...
[B]oth Gazprom and the Kremlin view [this drilling endeavor] as a stepping stone in a much broader effort to turn the Arctic into the focus of future exploration that makes up for Russia’s declining oil production at its Soviet-era Siberian fields.
Greenpeace reminds us that this is a dangerous gamble. From a press release: