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Greens discuss BP boycott as CEO taken out of firing line

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Greens discuss BP boycott as CEO taken out of firing line
Photo: DPA
11:47 CEST+02:00
Green politicians are discussing the idea of a boycott of BP and its Aral petrol stations in Germany, in the light of the multi-national’s failure to prevent or stop the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico.

After BP saved money on safety measure and after months of failure in stopping the leak, the time has come for a different approach, said Winfried Hermann, chairman of the parliamentary transport committee.

“I personally will no longer use any BP products and consider it sensible if consumers show this irresponsible company the red card,” he said.

Tübingen mayor Boris Palmer also supports the idea of a boycott because, he said, “reduced turnover at BP should make other oil multinationals reconsider.”

But the Green party leadership has not joined the calls for a boycott, and environmental groups such as Greenpeace and BUND, have decided against such a move, concentrating instead on encouraging people to reduce their use of oil in general.

The petrol station chain Aral, which has belonged to BP since 2002, has not registered any reduced turnover.

BP announced on Friday evening that chief executive Tony Hayward, who has come in for enormous criticism over his role in handling the leak, will be replaced in leading the operation to Robert Dudley, the company’s managing director of the Americas and Asia.

BP chairman Carl-Henric Svanberg told the UK’s Sky News he would also be personally taking a larger role in trying to control damage to the company from the spill and resulting environmental devastation.

“This has now turned into a reputation matter, a financial squeeze for BP, and a political matter, and that is why you will now see more of me,” he said.

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