There is a “growing radicalized environmentalist faction” in Canada that is opposed to the country’s energy sector policies, warns a newly declassified intelligence report.
The RCMP criminal intelligence assessment, focusing on Canadian waters, cites potential dangers from environmental activists to offshore oil platforms and hazardous marine shipments, representing perhaps the starkest assessment of such threats by the Canadian security community to date.
The report drew a sharp dismissal from Greenpeace — a prominent environmental group singled out in the document — which suggested it could simply be an effort by security authorities to tell the Harper government what it wants to hear.
The Canadian Press obtained a heavily censored copy of the September 2011 threat assessment of marine-related issues under the Access to Information Act.
The report was compiled by the Mounties with input from the Canada Border Services Agency, Canadian Security Intelligence Service, Defence Department, Fisheries and Oceans and Transport Canada. Contributing agencies reviewed the resulting assessment.
“The Canadian law enforcement and security intelligence community have noted a growing radicalized environmentalist faction within Canadian society that is opposed to Canada’s energy sector policies,” says the report.
“Greenpeace is opposed to the development of Canada’s Arctic region, as well as Canada’s offshore petroleum industry. Criminal activity by Greenpeace activists typically consists of trespassing, mischief, and vandalism, and often requires a law enforcement response.
“Greenpeace actions unnecessarily risk the health and safety of the activists, the facility’s staff, and the first responders who are required to extricate the activists.”
Recent protests off the coast of Greenland involving Greenpeace vessels MV Esperanza and Arctic Sunrise “highlight the need to be prepared for potential threats to the safety and security of offshore oil and gas platforms.”
“Tactics employed by activist groups are intended to intimidate and have the potential to escalate to violence.”