Thousands of Groningen gas opponents demand earthquake damage compensation
An estimated eight to ten thousand people in Groningen took part in a torchlight procession against gas extraction in the province. The municipality was satisfied with the protest, which drew attention to the people living in the earthquake area.
The protest was organized in response to the Cabinet's decision to double gas production. Protesters were also upset at the poor organization of subsidies for homeowners to strengthen their homes and make them more sustainable.
On Monday, thousands of people waited online for hours to apply for a 10,000 euro subsidy which critics said was too little compensation. On Friday, the Cabinet announced they would allocate an additional 250 million euros to the scheme.
The demonstration began at 8 p.m. at the Vismarket and ended there as well. Protesters carried signs and banners with "enough is enough" and "Peat fires are unquenchable. Respect is priceless." Along the route, tractors honked their horns in support of the demonstrators.
According to the organization, it is time for the Cabinet to take the situation in Groningen seriously. "We have to endure a lot as Groningers, but we also belong to the Netherlands. We want safety and compensation in return," organizer Chris Garrit said.
Groninger Soil Movement (GBB), the Groninger Gasberaard, former night mayor Chris Carrit and SP MP Sandra Beckerman organized the protest under the slogan "Respect for Groningen." The crowd, led by actor Marcel Hensema chanted "respect for Groningen, respect for Grunn."
In 2018, around 10,000 people attended a similar protest against gas extraction.
Reporting by ANP.