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‘On the Horizon’ will investigate the background of the oil industry in Ireland

Screen Shot 2013-06-13 at 18.18.02I am a documentary film-maker based in the West of Ireland, and am looking to fund a follow-on to my last, and first, feature documentary, ‘The Pipe’, which has won numerous awards and been broadcast in 25 countries on 4 continents.  While filming ‘The Pipe’ (supported by TG4 and IFB), a story about the community at the centre of the Corrib Gas controversy, I began to delve into the wider story behind Ireland’s Oil & Gas. Why would a small sovereign State put all its resources, both security, legal and political, at the behest of the worlds most powerful oil companies? Why was there very little appetite among the mainstream media to critically examine the story of Ireland’s Oil & Gas?On the Horizon

By Risteard O Domhnaill

http://www.fundit.ie/project/on-the-horizon

www.facebook.com/drillireland

[email protected]

ph: 0353 87 2859749

‘On the Horizon’ will investigate the background of the oil industry in Ireland, their dealings with the political system, and the communities who will be affected by the opening up of this new oil & gas frontier, estimated to be worth over $1 trillion.

I am a documentary film-maker based in the West of Ireland, and am looking to fund a follow-on to my last, and first, feature documentary, ‘The Pipe’, which has won numerous awards and been broadcast in 25 countries on 4 continents.  While filming ‘The Pipe’ (supported by TG4 and IFB), a story about the community at the centre of the Corrib Gas controversy, I began to delve into the wider story behind Ireland’s Oil & Gas. Why would a small sovereign State put all its resources, both security, legal and political, at the behest of the worlds most powerful oil companies? Why was there very little appetite among the mainstream media to critically examine the story of Ireland’s Oil & Gas?

The aim of this documentary is to lift a veil on the politics of the oil & gas industry, seeking answers as to why Minister Justin Keating’s 1975 ‘Norwegian style’ terms were dismantled by ministers Ray Burke and Bertie Ahern, and if there is any link between the awarding of exploration licences for political favours in the 1990’s. Looking at combined results of past drilling programs and current exploration activity, my aim is to set out a realistic picture of what is happening, and what is to come for the Irish Offshore.

In parallel with the political story, I will spend time with people who will be affected by oil & gas development, gaining an insight into what it will mean for the future of their communities and environment. I will look at similar coastal communities in Norway and Newfoundland, who have undergone enormous transformation as a result of oil exploration and production on a massive scale. Balancing the economic with the social and environmental costs, we ask the questions – in whose interest is this sudden push to open up the Irish Offshore?

This summer Exxon Mobil have brought in one of the worlds biggest oil rigs to drill a $100 million well in the deepwater Porcupine basin off the coast of Kerry. Other major oil companies are entering the Irish scene and previously drilled prospects are now looking very attractive. If the story is not told in the next year, it will be too late, and I envisage completion of the film in the second half of 2014, with further support for post production and shooting outside of Ireland, including fishing communities in Norway and Newfoundland.

The lack of broadcaster support immediately throws up massive challenges for a documentary of this scale. However, it also presents fantastic opportunities, and I am really looking forward to this hugely exciting journey, where the support and engagement of ordinary people, not bureaucrats, will define the production and its distribution. I hope to create a sustainable model of ‘crowd-sourcing’ such projects, which are almost impossible to get commissioned through the traditional channels.

If lots of people can give even a small donation, I can reach my €12,000 goal, and with public support, get the story of Ireland’s oil & gas out to a national and international audience.

http://www.fundit.ie/project/on-the-horizon

END

Related

Ireland encouraging oil and gas exploration

By PennEnergy Editorial Staff: June 12, 2013

Ireland’s energy minister Pat Rabbitte announced the country is encouraging oil and gas exploration, according to Platts. The energy minister also feels the country can learn lessons from Norway’s success in the industry.

“It is only through active exploration, especially drilling, that the potential [oil and gas] will be proven,” said Rabbitte. “It is a key government policy objective to encourage investment in oil and gas exploration off the Irish coast and to optimize the value of any oil and gas finds for Ireland.”

More than 70 companies were at the event where Rabbitte highlighted the potential economic benefits and opportunities the Irish could gain from furthering the country’s investment in offshore oil and gas exploration, the source reported. Rabbitte hopes a renewed interest in the Celtic sea will increase business development as well as create jobs and other economic benefits.

There has been recent growth in Irish oil and gas production and the country announced the funding of a new seismic survey further study the potential for offshore oil and gas exploration, according to Platts.

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