Pittsburgh, PA: Rising Tide North America released this statement in solidarity with the continuing resistance to the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota:
“For months, the Standing Rock Sioux nation and Indigenous communities from across the continent against have captured the imagination of the world with a bold stand against the Dakota Access Pipeline and the energy companies, the politicians and police that are determined to build it. The actions of literally thousands have delayed the pipeline’s construction and brought its construction to a standstill.
The Dakota Access Pipeline is a 1,170-mile long oil pipeline that originates in the Bakken oilfields of western North Dakota. It will carry 470,000 barrels of crude a day to Pakota, Illinois where it will link with other pipelines and be carried to refineries around the country. If built, the pipeline will be a cultural and environmental threat to the Standing Rock Sioux. The pipeline crosses the nation’s traditional hunting, fishing and burial territory as well as directly crossing under the Missouri River, the Sioux’s main source of water.
Police have responded with heavy handed arrests of Indigenous activists and removed free access to the Red Warrior and Sacred Stone camps near the pipeline construction site. Politicians in North Dakota have declared a state of emergency to discredit the protest camps. Corporations seeking to profit from the pipeline have filed civil litigation against hundreds of protesters to silence the dissent of communities facing a future of poisoned land, water and air.
We believe that the extraction of fossil fuels like Bakken oil, and the expansion of pipelines and other transportation infrastructure, is a dangerous threat to our communities, our wild places and the climate. We further believe that these practices gravely threaten the health, safety and traditional land rights of Indigenous communities.
If we are determined to prevent the pursuit of extreme energy from destroying our communities, natural systems and climate, then peaceful, but confrontational, protests like the Red Warrior and Sacred Stone camps are necessary actions for change.
For over a decade, there has been an unprecedented show of unity from environmental and social justice communities for those fighting for justice and ecology and this time is no different. There is not an inch of daylight between us and those blocking construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline in North Dakota. We stand with them as we’ve stood with those fighting mountaintop removal coal mining in Appalachia, those that fought the Keystone XL Pipeline from Alberta to Texas, those challenging fighting fossil fuel extraction and infrastructure across this country and those that continue to fight for Indigenous rights.
We stand in solidarity with those who stand up for us all.