Official: Seattle Shell protests caused environmental damage

An official with Washington state’s Department of Natural Resources says Seattle activists protesting Shell’s plans to drill for oil in the Arctic did some environmental damage to a popular dive park.

KIRO radio reports people left behind material they used to anchor their protest barge while kayakers protested last weekend near the Shell oil rig in Elliott Bay.

The barge known as “The People’s Platform” was parked over the dive park near Seacrest Park. Department of Natural Resources spokesman Joe Smillie says divers found cement blocks, cables and chains used to anchor the barge.

He says the damage was minimal and no one will be fined. But the protesters will have to pay for the cleanup, and their barge is being relocated.

The dive park is a popular location because it’s an octopus habitat.