Protesters Blockade Kinder Morgan Richmond Terminal Demanding Halt to Trans Mountain Tar Sands Pipeline


For immediate release, July 24, 2017

Contact: Patrick McCully, Rainforest Action Network – 628 224 8168
Isabella Zizi, Idle No More SF Bay – 510 932 0978
For High Resolution Photos, please contact Christopher Herrera at christopher@ran.org

Action Alert: Monday, July 24, 7:30 a.m.
1006 Canal Blvd, Richmond, CA 94804

Please donate to support the legal fund of these activists.

Protesters Blockade Kinder Morgan Richmond Terminal
Demanding Halt to Trans Mountain Tar Sands Pipeline

Richmond, CA – Protesters blocked three gates of the Kinder Morgan Richmond Terminal this morning, securing themselves to oil barrels and a 12-foot-long mock oil pipeline that reads “No Consent. No Pipeline.” The local activists are demanding that the company halt its new Trans Mountain pipeline in Canada. The controversial project would triple the capacity of an existing pipeline from Edmonton, Calgary to Burnaby, British Columbia to 890,000 barrels per day — facilitating increased extraction of tar sands oil, one of the world’s dirtiest fossil fuels.

“It’s important for me to stand up today for my indigenous brothers and sisters of the First Nations,” said Isabella Zizi of Idle No More SF Bay. “This crude tar sands oil will not just be affecting those up in Canada. It will likely be transported to the West Coast and potentially to here in my hometown of Richmond. Our lands, our waterways and our air needs are constantly being overlooked by these industries. We, as indigenous people, cannot and should not be swept under the rug. If any of these elements are harmed, all life will suffer the consequences.”

Kinder Morgan, a spin-off from Enron, is one of North America’s largest energy infrastructure companies. The company claims it will start construction on its 715-mile Trans Mountain pipeline in September despite fierce opposition to the project from numerous First Nations and other communities and cities along its path. The recently elected government of British Columbia also opposes the project.

Oil from the Kinder Morgan pipeline would be loaded onto oil tankers in Burnaby. This would lead to a massive increase of tanker traffic in the waters of the Pacific Northwest – and potentially in San Francisco Bay. Any spills of tar sands crude would be nearly impossible to clean up because when tar sands oil spills in water – it sinks. Refining the tar sands crude in Richmond would worsen air pollution in local communities.

“We are already over-taxed when it comes to pollution in our community and toxins in our bodies,” said Andres Soto of Communities for a Better Environment. “Kinder Morgan doesn’t care about their workers. They’re making them sacrifice their health and the health of their families in order to put food on the table. We demand clean jobs for our community. We refuse tar sands oil.”

“We are determined to prevent the pursuit of extreme energy from destroying our communities, natural systems and climate, therefore confrontational protests like this action are necessary for change,” said Corazon Amada, an organizer with Diablo Rising Tide. Amada was one of several activists who were risking arrest during this peaceful protest. “We stand in solidarity with those everywhere fighting to stop Kinder Morgan.”

Last month, over 28 major banks were warned not to finance the expansion project in a letter signed by over 20 Indigenous and environmental groups. The letter cites The Treaty Alliance Against Tar Sands Expansion’s call for an international campaign to divest from any financial institution that funds Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline. More than 130 Indigenous Nations have already signed the The Treaty Alliance Against Tar Sands Expansion.

“The bank’s financing Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline are violating Indigenous rights, clean water, clean air and the climate,” said Patrick McCully, Climate and Energy Program Director at Rainforest Action Network. “We intend to hold these banks accountable. And our primary target is JPMorgan Chase, the largest Wall Street funder of tar sands .”

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Diablo Rising Tide is the San Francisco Bay Area chapter of Rising Tide North America. Rising Tide North America is an all-volunteer grassroots organizing network in Canada, the U.S., and Mexico who confronts the root causes of climate change with non-violent direct action and grassroots organizing and education. You can find out more at www.diablorisingtide.org.

 

Arrests on the Tavaputs Plateau During a Nature Walk with Children

Reposted from Canyon Country Rising Tide Website. 

Here is a link to legal support for 10 folks who were just arrested at the Utah Tar Sands mine site for studying biodiversity with a teacher, parents and children… please share widely!!!

Update June 12th, 8AM:

All ten individuals were released from the Uintah County Jail at roughly 4:45AM this morning on bail.  They are tired but fine and the parents are eager to reunite with their children.

Update June 11th, 9:00 PM:

Ten people Have been taken to Vernal County jail on charges of Criminal Trespass, a class B Misdemeanor

 

June 11, 2016 3:45PM

Seepridge Road, Uintah County, UT – Ten participants of Utah Tar Sands Resistance’s

family camp out on the Tavaputs Plateau have been arrested after completing

biodiversity studies close to the country’s first tar sands mine. A number of children

and adults walked to the wooded area next to the Children’s Legacy Mine to count

plants and identify different species, returning to an area that several members of

the group had camped at freely in previous years. Upon returning to their vehicles

they were met by Ronald Barton, police officer salaried on the public buck to police

the area for fossil fuel companies. Mr. Barton proceeded to detain the group for

trespassing and even threatened parents with reckless child endangerment. He also

instructed a news reporter who had wanted to follow the group that she would be

arrested if she attempted to do so.

Canadian company US Oil Sands is hoping to extract tar sands – a fossil fuel even

more polluting than oil and coal – at the Children’s Legacy Mine, and leasing SITLA

land (which is public land). Protesters have been holding a vigil by the mine for

several years, and documenting the ongoing destruction to land and wildlife.

Shea Wickelson, who led the biodiversity lesson, is a science teacher in Salt Lake

City: “I have been camping here with my family for the past four years. Last year, we

took some biodiversity data with my son and others. This year we wanted to see

how the mining expansion has impacted the area and take new data. We were

surprised to see the area so razed because we had read that US Oil Sands was ending

development, but it looks like a significant expansion to us. I am disappointed to

find out that my family and I are no longer allowed to be on the public land that we

have been visiting for the past four years.”

Natascha Deininger of Wasatch Rising Tide: “It’s ironic that local law enforcement is

so concerned with protecting industry interests, when the land in question is

actually public, and was ultimately stolen from the first nations of this area. It is

outrageous that a science teacher is being detained for teaching kids about

biodiversity on public land, when US Oil Sands is destroying hopes of a livable

future.”

Raphael Cordray of Utah Tar Sands Resistance: “We have a responsibility to the

public to document and witness the damage to the area. We are investigating a

crime scene and making records of what is happening here, as the decision makers

and regulators are ignoring the real concerns about this project.”

 

 

For Media, Please call: Lauren Wood (801) 647-1540

BREAKING: Climate activists launch daring occupation of the California PUC, calling for agency to shut down all gas storage facilities

SAN FRANCISCO – Two Bay Area residents have occupied the ledge above the entrance to the headquarters of the California Public Utilities Commission (PUC) today to protest the PUC’s failure to protect the Golden State from the climate and health impacts of methane from underground natural gas storage facilities.
A well blew out at SoCalGas’ Aliso Canyon facility near Porter Ranch on October 23, 2015. Since then, 96,000 metric tons of methane have escaped into the atmosphere, the equivalent of an additional 505,000 cars on the road for a year. Methane is a greenhouse gas that is 86 times more climate-intensive than carbon dioxide. While SoCalGas reported last week that the leak had been plugged, the Aliso Canyon leak has been responsible for 25% of the state’s daily greenhouse gas emissions.
Aliso Canyon is one of 12 underground natural gas storage facilities in California, and one of 326 nationwide that use depleted oil and gas wells for storage for urban customers.
“While plugging the leak at Aliso Canyon has been a good step, today we are demanding that the PUC shut down all gas storage facilities; until they do, we are occupying the PUC,” said Christy Tennery-Spalding from Diablo Rising Tide, the San Francisco Bay Area chapter of Rising Tide North America.
The PUC is one of two agencies responsible for oversight of underground natural gas storage facilities. The leaking well had not been inspected since 1976. The CEO of SoCalGas reported to the LA Weekly that a safety valve on the well had been removed in 1979.
“It is unconscionable that these regulators are putting people at risk while giving companies a pass. The last time Aliso Canyon was inspected by the PUC was the last time Jerry Brown was governor,” said Kelsey Baker, from Occupy San Francisco Environmental Justice, currently occupying the ledge over the PUC’s headquarters entrance.
SoCalGas is a division of Sempra Energy and uses the Aliso Canyon facility to store natural gas for delivery to 12 natural gas power plants and 21 million consumers in Southern California. Since the blowout, 10,000 of Porter Ranch’s 30,000 residents have fled the community. Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency, requiring the several state agencies to take urgent action.
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Diablo Rising Tide is the San Francisco Bay Area chapter of Rising Tide North America. Rising Tide North America is an all-volunteer grassroots organizing network in Canada, the U.S., and Mexico who confronts the root causes of climate change with protests and events. You can find out more at www.diablorisingtide.org.

Convergence In Support of Eco-Prisoners & Against Toxic Prisons

June 11 – 13, 2016 in Washington D.C.
International Days of Action Everywhere
FTP imageFOR OVER A DECADE, June 11th has been a day of action in solidarity with environmentalists and anarchists imprisoned for their actions in defense of the Earth. The day has its origins in an international outcry over the extreme and unprecedented sentencing of Jeffrey Luers to 22 years in prison for damaging several SUV’s at a car dealership. Since its inception in 2004, the June 11th day of action and other acts of solidarity have been instrumental in winning shorter sentences or early release for eco-prisoners, including Luers himself as well as Eric McDavid, who was entrapped by an informant. Yet committed earth defenders such as Marius Mason, targeted in the FBI’s “Green Scare,” are still serving harsh sentences in maximum security prisons for taking direct action against earth destroying industries.
MEANWHILE IN APPALACHIA, the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) plans to build a massive maximum security prison, on top of a former mountaintop removal coal mine in Letcher County, Eastern Kentucky, surrounded by sludge ponds and coal processing and transport operations. This amounts to an environmental justice nightmare, where prisoners who are disproportionately low-income and people of color face toxic conditions behind bars.
It also happens that this prison site is about a mile as the crow flies from a rare and very biodiverse pocket of Eastern old-growth called the Lilley Cornett Woods. Learn more in the December 2105 issue of the Earth First! Journal.
As of December 2015, the BOP got over $400 million approved for the prison’s construction. The newly-formed Campaign to Fight Toxic Prisons (FTP) is organizing to stop it, and looking to grow a coalition of opposition.
STOPPING ONE PRISON IS NOT A MAGIC BULLET to ending the U.S. police state, the one that gave way to world’s largest prison nation and in turn serves as the apparatus of repression that keeps the planet shackled to industrial capitalism…
But it’s a pretty good place to build from. In particular, it is a powerful place that the environmental movement can express solidarity with the growing rage over the racist criminal justice system.
The goal of gathering in D.C. is to converge for a series of actions that can put dual pressure on both the BOP and the EPA regarding this proposed prison, and environmental justice issues related to prisoners in general, while continuing to fight for the release of eco-prisoners in the spirit of June 11th. We also hope to see this effort build stronger bonds between the eco-defense movement and the movements against police and mass incarceration.
We envision a gathering June 11th to 12th for networking, strategizing and organizing, culminating with a mass action on Monday the 13th.
FOR THOSE WHO LIKE THE IDEA, but can’t make it to D.C., there are other options. For example, the BOP has regional offices in 5 other locations.
Additionally, the PR company that is contracted to produce the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the BOP’s Letcher prison is called Cardno, and has offices in most every U.S. city, and other cities all over the world. This is the same firm that was contracted by the U.S. State Department to produce an EIS for the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
In many ways, the prison experiences of activists like Luers, Mason, McDavid, and others such as Daniel McGowan, Rebecca Rubin and Tim DeChristopher, have provided courage and inspiration rather than the desired effect of intimidation. They also gave the environmental movement an inside look at the prison epidemic in the U.S. With the steady stream of urban uprisings against the police state, there has never been a better time to organize at this intersection of ecology and incarceration. We hope you’ll join us.
Get in touch if you are interested in helping to organize this J11/FTP convergence or if you are part of a group who wants to co-sponsor it. More details are forthcoming. Contact: FightToxicPrisons@gmail.com
Co-sponsoring groups include Earth First! Prisoner Support, Rising Tide North America, Appalachia Resist!, Jericho D.C., Prison Ecology Project and others TBA.