Wild Idaho RT: Tar Sands Megaload Resistance Solidarity

WIRTCross-posted from Wild Idaho Rising Tide

Updates and additions to Idaho & Montana Tar Sands Megaload Protests!

Over the last month by Christmas Eve, Umatilla and Warm Springs tribes, Rising Tide groups, and allied organizations and activists have staged dozens of actions escalating Northwest resistance against tar sands mining and megaload exploitation of indigenous and public lands and people.  At least five Umatilla-led protection ceremonies in Pendleton, four Port of Umatilla protests and blockades, three Portland and Seattle area office occupations of megaload hauler Omega Morgan and designer Resources Conservation Company International, two blockades in John Day, Hermiston and Stanfield protests, a Portland visit to the Oregon Department of Transportation, and a light brigade overpass action have resulted in nineteen mostly illegal arrests of activists at the four blockades [1].

Activists with 350, All Against The Haul, Blue Skies Campaign, Idaho Residents Against Gas Extraction, Montana Indian Peoples Action, five Rising Tide groups, and multiple indigenous tribes are planning protests in Umatilla, Oregon, Missoula and other locations in Montana, and in or near Marsing, Mountain Home, Bellevue, and Salmon, Idaho, over the next month [2-7].  In the wake of years of relentlessly meeting every Highway 12 and 95 tar sands facilities shipment in Idaho with resistance, Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) and allies will not stand down, despite recent, illegal, and unethical police attempts in John Day to dissuade further First Amendment-protected expressions of citizen dissent of the state/corporate fossil fuel agenda [8].  As news of Rising Tide and allied protests has spread through some of the most popular Idaho media outlets over the past month, we are calling Oregonians, Idahoans, and Montanans to rise up against tar sands megaloads [9].

These heat exchanger cores of wastewater evaporators are likely the remnants of the ten in-situ tar sands mining modules that Omega Morgan tried to transport in August to Canada, up Highway 12 through Nez Perce resistance – manufactured at the General Electric plant in Port Coquitlam, B.C., disassembled (not made) in Portland, and barged to the Port of Umatilla.  Rising Tide groups in Missoula, Moscow, Portland, Seattle, and Spokane have struggled against these components of tar sands extraction since early 2010.  Understanding their ultimate implications for vast ecocide, genocide, and climate chaos, we cannot in good conscience stand aside while some of the wealthiest corporations profit at the expense of millions of people and species and the habitats that sustain them [10].  As our Oregon colleagues develop a seventh lawsuit against megaload incursions of the Northwest, we invite everyone to participate in the following actions.

Idaho & Montana Tar Sands Megaload Protests!

After a presumed five-day journey across Oregon extended into three tumultuous weeks of delays wrought by wild weather and passionate protesters, the first of three Omega Morgan-hauled tar sands megaloads traveled along the Snake River and entered Idaho on Sunday night, December 22-23 [1, 11].  Local scouts reported its passage south and east from the Vale, Oregon, weigh station to the Marsing, Idaho, area.  As described in a December 13 event announcement, 350 Idaho and WIRT will stage protests across southern Idaho, contingent on the travel schedule of the three pieces of extreme energy mining equipment [12].  Although social and other media initially blocked organizational attempts to share information about these civil displays of discontent, regional networks have fostered interest among megaload-impacted communities, who have expressed enthusiasm in engaging in these two-state events.  With all of these stakeholders, we will continue work to stop Alberta-bound machinery that accelerates tar sands extraction and transportation and accompanying environmental and human health devastation.  Wild Idaho Rising Tide will regularly update the tentative dates, times, places, and carpool arrangements of megaload protesting and monitoring activities on the WIRT website and facebook pages.  Please bring your family, friends, and neighbors, and come prepared with protest signs, banners, and equipment, musical instruments, voices, and chants, audio and video recorders, cameras, notepads, and your spirit of solidarity, regional resistance, and freedom of expression.

* Boise carpools to Marsing and Mountain Home: Contact Ann Ford of 350 Idaho at annkeenan4d@gmail.com or 208-344-4675.  Meet at the Shopko sign/parking lot at 2655 South Broadway Avenue, tentatively at 8 pm MST on Friday, December 27, and later dates.

* Marsing protest: Also meet at the Marsing Elementary/Middle School parking lot, 205 Eighth Avenue West, Highway 78, at 9 pm on Friday, December 27.

* Mountain Home protest: Also meet at the Pilot Travel Center, 1050 Highway 20 at Interstate 84 Exit 95, at a date and time to be arranged (TBA).

* Wood River Valley (Bellevue) protest: Meet to carpool in the Atkinsons Market parking lot, 757 North Main Street in Bellevue, or at the Timmerman Junction rest area, on the southwest corner of the U.S. Highway 20 and Idaho Highway 75 intersection, at a TBA date and time.

* Salmon protest: Meet at the Stagecoach Inn, 201 Riverfront Drive, at a TBA date and time.

* Spokane carpools to Missoula and Montana at a TBA date and time: Contact Terry Hill of Spokane Rising Tide at facebook.com/terry.hill.509.

* Megaload monitoring at various locations: Contact WIRT at 208-301-8039 and wild.idaho.rising.tide@gmail.com.

* Contributions for organizer, monitor, and protester travel and potential legal expenses: Donate through WePay at https://www.wepay.com/donations/907347297 or send checks to P.O. Box 9817, Moscow, ID 83843.

Solidarity with Umatilla Tribes, Resist the Megaload!

On Sunday night, December 22, the second Omega Morgan-hauled tar sands megaload in Oregon left the Port of Umatilla and stopped near Pendleton on Monday morning.  Portland Rising Tide is calling on all supporters and allies from across the region, to join a special demonstration and ceremony in Pendleton, led by members of the Confederated Umatilla Tribes, when the transport resumes travel on Monday evening [13].  Please bring your friends and family to this unforgettable holiday action, provide your own food, fuel, and possible lodging, RSVP if you plan to attend and carpool, and circulate this event announcement via facebook, email, Twitter [14].

Carpools from Portland to Pendleton are meeting at 1 pm at 4105 North Haight Avenue, at the corner of Mason and Haight streets in Portland.  In Pendleton, people are gathering at 5:30 pm at the Wildhorse Casino Business Center, 46510 Wildhorse Boulevard.  At the casino, participants will discuss the action plan and prepare for gathering at the nearby megaload, to bear witness to its departure en route to expanding tar sands mining operations.  Organizers do not anticipate anyone risking arrest at this ceremony, but ask participants to share their support and solidarity through their physical presence among a frontline community resisting tar sands development.  Portland comrades will rejoin carpools at around 9 pm.

Our amazing Portland Rising Tide and allied friends still need financial support for legal expenses and organizing against the megaloads.  They have raised almost $16,000 but will need $20,000 to offset already incurred expenses.  Please donate and encourage your associates to do the same [15].


[1] Oregon Resistance (Wild Idaho Rising Tide)


[2] Megaload Shipment Poised to Enter Southern Idaho (December 10 KBOI TV Boise)


[3] Giant Heat Exchanger Will Soon Pass through Idaho (December 10 Idaho Press-Tribune)


[4] Over the River and Through the Woods (December 11 Boise Weekly)


[5] Megaload Inching Closer to Idaho (December 13 Idaho Mountain Express)


[6] String of Protests Scheduled for Mega-Load’s Journey through Southern Idaho (December 14 Boise Weekly)


[7] Idaho Issues Permit for Megaload to Cross State, Climb Lost Trail Pass (December 21 Missoulian)


[8] Op-Ed: Yes, Virginia, There is a Police State (December 21 Huntington News)


[9] Top Ten Idaho Newspapers and News Sites (All You Can Read)


[10] Megaload Facts (Wild Idaho Rising Tide)


[11] Megaload to Cross into Idaho by Monday Morning (December 22 Twin Falls Times-News)


[12] Idaho & Montana Tar Sands Megaload Protests! (December 13 Wild Idaho Rising Tide)



[13] Solidarity with Umatilla Tribes, Resist the Megaload! (December 22 Portland Rising Tide)


[14] RSVP for Action at Second Megaload in Pendleton (Portland Rising Tide)


[15] Megaload Support – Portland Rising Tide (WePay)





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