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14

StopEsso Campaign Reaches Luxemburg

Esso is announced to be environmental enemy number one by Greenpeace

Esso is announced to be environmental enemy number one by Greenpeace.

Greenpeace alleges that intense lobbying by Esso's parent company ExxonMobil contributed to the US pulling out of the UN Kyoto Protocol on climate change, as well as to watered down commitments to renewable energies at last month's Earth Summit in Johannesburg.

The company denies being unconcerned about global warming and says it is taking action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, by improving energy efficiency and working with engine manufacturers.

A StopEsso campaign, backed by Greenpeace, has protested twice at Esso stations across the UK and now reached Luxemburg.

Green campaigners has handcuffed themselves to Esso petrol pumps in Luxembourg, closing down all the company's stations in the cheap-fuel country and widening a UK-based protest.

All of the 28 Esso stations were not selling petrol, over 600 protestors from 31 countries were taking part.

Drivers from neighbouring countries often buy petrol in Luxembourg, with four of every five cars filling up their tanks registered outside the country, as it has one of the lowest motor fuel tax rates in the European Union.

A poll commissioned by Greenpeace said a significant number of British motorists had stopped buying petrol from Esso stations and switched to other retailers. However, Esso says the campaign has not affected its retail sales.

Analysts comment that being handed a reputation as environmental enemy number one for such a big customer-facing business is to be considered a brand risk.