Environmental protesters have tonight ended their blockade of the Valero Pembroke Refinery.

The protesters voluntarily ended their blockade which caused disruption throughout the day.

The move follows Valero's bypassing of the protest by removing part of a hedge by digger to allow lorries to drive across a field to the refinery.

Police were taking protesters' details as those taking part ended their action.

Western Telegraph:


Western Telegraph:

Picture: Martin Cavaney.

Protesters moved in early this morning and had chained themselves together to prevent entry to the refinery.

The group behind the protest released a statement on the action: 

"This morning ten protesters from Extinction Rebellion have blocked the three entrance roads, leading to one of the biggest oil refineries in Europe.

"We take this action today because the government, big business and general populace are not moving away from fossil fuels fast enough.

"The government declared a climate emergency, and so far has not committed beyond words. Everyone needs to act now before it is too late. 

"We know that the future of the planet is at stake if we do not take action to stop the flow of oil. Tomorrow is a general strike to protest about climate crisis, and shutting down this refinery is part of that.

"It is time to work together to slow the tumorous growth of consumption. For the sakes of all future generations and all life forms, we are acting now."

A spokesman for Extinction Rebellion Pembrokeshire added: "XR Pembrokeshire is not involved in the ongoing protest at Valero, but supports the protesters efforts to highlight our continued reliance on fossil fuels and the slow action by governments in responding to the very real climate emergency.

"We are not calling for workers at Valero to lose their jobs, which would be very damaging to the local economy. We would support a phased move to green energy without causing  mass redundancies."

Western Telegraph:

One protester added: "We are doing this out of frustration at the complete inaction of government to do anything to reduce our dependence on fossil fuels."

Earlier, a spokesman at Valero refinery said: “Valero can confirm that a peaceful protest is taking place on public roads on the approach to the refinery.

"The plant continues to operate in a safe and reliable manner without impact.”

Western Telegraph:

Picture: Staci Sylvan.

Dyfed-Powys Police said while the protest was peaceful, it had caused significant disruption and are advising motorists to use alternative routes.

A spokesperson said: "Dyfed-Powys Police received a report of a group of people blocking entrances to the Valero Refinery in Pembroke at around 5.45am on Thursday, September 19.

"It has been established the group are Extinction Rebellion protestors.

"The protest is currently peaceful but is causing significant disruption to local traffic at the Valero site. No arrests have been made.

"Police officers are at the scene and working with partner agencies to minimise disruption to communities and ensure the safety of everyone involved.

"The right of free speech and protest is the right of everyone, however, officers will take necessary action against those who deliberately choose to act outside the law.

"For those who have to make journeys in the area, police advise you to avoid the area if possible or use alternative routes."

The protesters had been receiving food and drink from supporters.