Kirsty Wynn

Kirsty Wynn is a senior reporter at the Herald on Sunday.

Lawless foregoes comforts to fight oil drilling

Lucy Lawless and Greenpeace activists protesting on board a Shell-contracted oil drillship in Port Taranaki. Photo / Greenpeace
Lucy Lawless and Greenpeace activists protesting on board a Shell-contracted oil drillship in Port Taranaki. Photo / Greenpeace

Eco-princess Lucy Lawless has given up home comforts for a second night up a gusty tower with no place to sleep or pee.

The star of Xena Warrior Princess illegally boarded a ship docked in Taranaki with seven Greenpeace activists this week to protest oil giant Shell's plans to drill for oil in Alaska.

Police told Lawless she would be arrested when she stepped off the Noble Discoverer, which is due to depart on a 6000 nautical mile journey to drill in the Chukchi Sea.

But Lawless said the discomfort of her new digs, as well as the threat of arrest, was a small price to pay.

"It's not the Ritz but we didn't come here for a pleasure cruise," Lawless told the Herald on Sunday. "We have a moral responsibility to be here and we are well prepared."

The 53m climb to the top of the drilling ship's derrick was terrifying, she said. "The climb up was like nothing I have done before, I was well outside my comfort zone." In an online clip, Lawless jokes about peeing in a bottle and sleeping in a hammock on the ship's tower.

Showing two bottles filled with amber liquid Lawless laughs, "one of these bottles is drinkable one of these bottles is not - it's a lottery."

The mother of three said she would rather be at home with her children but was protesting to save the planet for future generations. She would stay as long as was necessary to draw attention to planned drilling.

"An oil spill in Alaska wouldn't be able to be cleaned up at the low temperatures and could poison the whole food chain," she said.

- Herald on Sunday

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