FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
February 4, 2021
8 Water Protectors Blockade Line 3 Fueling Station
(Park Rapids, MN) Thursday morning, 8 water protectors locked to one another with barrels of concrete and a piano blockaded an Enbridge fueling station and worksite as dozens more held space.
As piano music floated through the early morning light, Water Protectors sang and uplifted the Native-led struggle to protect Anishinaabe territory, sacred wild rice, and stand with Mother Earth. Line 3 poses a 10% expansion of tar sands production; tar sands is the dirtiest fossil fuel on earth.
The location is near the proposed crossing by Line 3 through the Shell River, one of many river crossings sought by Enbridge, including the headwaters of the Mississippi River. Last weekend, Congresswoman Ilhan Omar visited the Mississippi headwaters and the Giniw Collective encampment, one of several along the route.
Many of the Water Protectors onsite traveled from the northeast to act in solidarity with Anishinaabe peoples here in Minnesota.
Tyler Schaeffer said, “I’m profoundly concerned about the future of life on our planet and my deepest desire is for future generations to grow up safe in a world that hasn’t been wrecked by greed and shortsightedness. Where water is clean to drink. Where we’ve come back to balance and honor the earth as sacred. It’s time we follow the lead and wisdom of indigenous peoples with humility and courage.”
Reina Palm, a teacher from mid-coast Maine, said, “I am here first and foremost to follow indigenous leadership. I am 24 years old and my whole life I have felt the pull and beauty of our world and home. I remember being 4 years old and learning about climate change and the destruction of land and peoples and being deeply frightened. It is only becoming more urgent and necessary to act. Line 3 travels through so many wild lands, waters, and indigenous homes. It draws a clear picture of destruction in its path. I know it is easy to feel vulnerable, scared, tired, and discouraged. But together we can with the power of community and love, stop line 3.”
Noah McKenna, a landscaper from Massachusetts said, “When government fails to honor treaties and ensure a just transition, we must act directly. I am honored to put my body on the line in solidarity with indigenous resistance to protect mother earth and all of our futures. Together we can stop line 3!”
Jay O’har, a Quaker from Portland, ME, said, “As a person of faith I am moved to action by a call from indigenous leadership to protect the water and defend treaty rights from a government corporate power that continue to perpetuate the false doctrine of discovery and supremacy. For me this is a call to shared liberation to stop Line 3 and build a new relationship to the earth and among all people.” Jay continued, “Our group is here to follow indigenous leadership, defend life, stop line 3, and embody as much love as possible. We are a network committed to climate action and racial justice. We follow BIPOC leadership whenever we can and practice reparations.”
Ethan Hughes said, “I have two daughters and I care about all children’s future. I will do anything I can to protect life while following BIPOC leadership. Risk aversion leads to great harm.” Ethan continued, “I was a marine biologist and educator when I saw the ocean collapsing, I became a water protector. I also follow indigenous leadership because they hold and have fought to protect for 100s of years a wisdom much more profound than science. A wisdom humanity desperately needs at this time for our collective survival and liberation. I am also here for my daughters and all children. Line 3 represents the destruction of the Mississippi watershed, breaking the treaties, oppression of indigenous people, speeding up the climate crisis, and sixth mass extinction. It is time to risk everything for love and justice. Together we will stop line 3.”
Briana Halliwell, a Quaker from New England Yearly Meeting, said, “I travelled from Maine to stand in solidarity with the indigenous peoples of northern Minnesota in resistance to the Line 3 Pipeline expansion that cuts through hundreds of miles of Anishinaabe treaty territory. I am here to life up the voices of the people, animals, landscapes, and watersheds whose voices have historically been unrecognized, erased, or not understood by the patriarchal dominant culture of separation and white supremacy that founded this country and continues to destroy, not honor or create life.”
Erin, a farmer and educator from Massachusetts, said, “I am here as an act of love for my godkids and the land that raised me. I am here to do all I can to give our communities a chance to survive and to minimize suffering. I am here as a small step to address the devastation caused by white settlers and to the native peoples of this place. Line 3 is one of the largest fossil fuel pipeline projects in the world, and is slated to carry tar sands oil, polluting MN and adding to the devastation of the climate chaos. I am here because stopping line 3 is one of the highest impact things we can do to address climate chaos and uphold US treaties. Together we can stop line 3.”
Dan Truesdale of Southwest Michigan said, “I am here to stand in solidarity with indigenous leadership to honor the earth. We need climate justice and racial justice now and together we will stop line 3.”
Shawn Gregory, a community worker from Southeast Texas, said, “I just care so much about the health of people who I love, especially my nephew and future generations. I don’t want to live with regret, so I have to act in whatever way I know how to stop Line 3 and follow the leadership of indigenous communities. Together we will stop line 3.”