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Shell to go ahead with Wild Court seismic testing after court gives greenlight

CAPE TOWN - Shell will go ahead with testing for exploration off the Wild Coast after a court dismissed an application by environmentalists.

The Makhanda High Court has on Friday refused to grant an urgent interdict to stop a seismic survey that was meant to start on Wednesday.

The court has found environmental organisations had failed to prove irreparable harm would be done to marine life.

Acting judge Avinash Govindjee said he took into account the public interest in the matter.

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However, he's not convinced of a reasonable apprehension of "irreparable harm".

The applicants Natural Justice, Greenpeace Africa, the Border Deep Sea Angling Association and the Kei Mouth Ski Boat Club are dismayed the court dismissed the application without granting their request to be allowed to return to make further representations and present expert evidence.

They've also been hit with a costs order, even though the application was made in the public interest to protect the ocean and coastal environment.

Shell argued there've been around 325 seismic surveys across the globe without any reports of death or irreversible harm to marine life.