Climate Groups will Shut Down D.C. with Mass Nonviolent Civil Disobedience During the Global Climate Strike and U.N. Climate Summit this September

For more information email press@strikedc.org

Washington, D.C., August 28 – Youth leaders from around the world have called for a Global Climate Strike and week of action from September 20-27. Youth have led the way so far, but now they are calling on everyone to take action alongside them. In Washington, D.C. we are answering that call in a major way: on September 23, we are going to Shut Down D.C.

While countries deliberate the fate of the world at the U.N. Climate Action Summit in New York City, a coalition of climate groups and allies will bring traffic and business as usual to a standstill in the nation’s capital. Parents, workers, students and everyone who is concerned about global heating will skip work and school and put off their other responsibilities to take action on the climate crisis.

The multi-site blockade will shut down key intersections all across the city and demand sweeping action from the U.S. Government to address the climate emergency. The event is a response to youth calls for a Global Climate Strike and will follow a student-led march to Congress on September 20. The Shut Down D.C. kickoff meeting is taking place today at 7 PM at the Friends Meeting House in Washington, D.C. near Dupont Circle. The next meeting will be on September 4 at 6:30 PM at the same place.

“[Politicians] ignore our will as voters, our rallies, our calls to action and even our pleas, so I am no longer interested in asking,” said Kathleen Brophy, who is an organizer with 350 DC. In the past, Brophy has worked with communities affected by oil extraction and witnessed the devastation it had locally. “The severity of the issue and the complete lack of response from elected officials necessitates mass civil disobedience,” she said.

The blockades are being organized by a coalition of activists from different climate and social justice organizations including Extinction Rebellion DC, 350 DC, Zero Hour, Rising Tide North America, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, the Movement for a People’s Party, Backbone Campaign, Code Pink and the Friends Meeting in Washington Social Concerns Committee.

This spring, more than 1.4 million young people in 123 countries went on strike to demand that governments reverse the climate crisis. This fall, Shut Down D.C. marks the start of an international wave of citywide climate shutdowns on October 7 in London, Paris, Madrid, Berlin, Amsterdam and New York City.

The Earth’s life support systems are failing as global heating spawns innumerable crises. Millions are facing hunger and migration as their homes sink beneath the waves and farm land turns to desert. Biodiversity is plummeting and ecosystems are breaking down as a sixth mass extinction grips the planet. The oceans are acidifying and disease vectors are expanding. The Amazon Rainforest, which produces 20 percent of the world’s oxygen, is ablaze and nearing a tipping point of cascading collapse. Humanity has never faced a crisis of this magnitude and only immediate and transformative change can ensure our survival.

“Our children are calling to us. We must respond,” said Fletcher Harper, Executive Director of GreenFaith, in regards to the climate strikes. Across the world, frontline communities, indigenous peoples, communities of color, and the poor are bearing the brunt of a crisis caused by fossil fuel corporations and politicians. In recognition that decades of petitions, protests and phone calls have been all but ignored by our leaders, the action will use nonviolent civil disobedience to elevate the demands to a level of urgency that matches the crisis.

This September there are over 600 events taking place worldwide in support of the Global Climate Strike, and more than 130 across the United States.

Water Protectors Lock to Enbridge Office Gates, Work Halted

photo via Ginew

Cross-posted from Stop Line 3

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
August 19, 2019
Contact: ginew@protonmail.com
ayse@ran.org

Water Protectors Lock to Enbridge Office Gates, Work Halted

Bemidji, MN — In the early morning, 6 water protectors locked to the gates of a key Enbridge office in Bemidji, MN in protest of proposed tar sands pipeline project Line 3. 2 chained their necks to the gate, risking personal safety for the hundreds of watersheds Enbridge proposes to send nearly 1M barrels of tar sands from Alberta through on its way to the shores of Lake Superior.

Enbridge responded by closing its office for the day.

Wild rice season is nearing, in which Anishinaabe people will take to their canoes to harvest the sacred food that is at the heart of Anishinaabe culture. Enbridge plans to send tar sands through dozens of wild rice watersheds, irrevocably impacting its growth and survival.

Line 3 is one proposed infrastructure project out of the Alberta tar sands, alongside TransCanada’s Keystone XL and Kinder Morgan’s TransMountain pipelines. Tar sands is the dirtiest fossil fuel in the world. Weeks ago, the Teck Frontier Mine, a proposed tar sands expansion twice the size of Vancouver was recommended by a board of Canadian environmental regulators.

“As an able-bodied and willing person, it is my duty to stand with Anishinaabe people who are putting their lives on the line every day standing up for all of us, for all of our water.” Kieran Cuddy said, while locked to the front gate of Enbridge’s office.

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Virginia: Mountain Valley Pipeline Fighters Disrupt Construction

Photo via Appalachians Against Pipelines.

Yesterday, two pipeline fighters locked themselves to construction equipment at a Mountain Valley Pipeline work site in Franklin County, VA, preventing work at the site. The banners read, “EARTH IS ON FIRE, TURN OFF THE GAS” and “¡SOLIDARIDAD CON PUERTO RICO!”

When asked why he’s taking action, Cricket, one of the people locked to equipment today, said, “Lots of things bring us here, I think. Speaking for myself, I’m currently going to school for integrated science education, which means my long term life plan is to become a science teacher. Hopefully my blossoming legal record after this doesn’t mess that up for me, but those goals stem from wanting to empower and support the wellbeing of future generations. Those commitments that call me to education are the same commitments that being me here, trying to protect the earth from another pipeline that will contribute to the mass extinction we’re going through right now.

“Unless we can stop climate chaos, the students I teach won’t have a planet to learn about, or potable water to drink, or even clean air to breathe, for that matter. So no matter what happens after this, I know I’m doing something that I will be proud to explain for the rest of my life. Clove and I are expressing care for the future.”

Clove, the other person locked on site, stated the following in reference to the “¡SOLIDARIDAD CON PUERTO RICO!” banner: “One indicator of climate destabilization is the increasing severity of hurricanes. In 2017, Hurricane Maria devastated the island of Puerto Rico as well as other surrounding places. After the hurricane, most of the disaster relief came from the people first impacted. This shouldn’t really come as a surprise to anyone — the first responders are always those first impacted — and it also shouldn’t come as a surprise that the government turned their noses up at the people struggling to keep themselves and their communities alive in the wake of that disaster.

“Since that hurricane, we’ve seen communities take care of each other in ways the government won’t, and now more than ever we’re seeing people take that power and use it to reject that government all together. We want to show love and support to the folks in Puerto Rico that are fighting for autonomy in their lives after a disaster, on a planet that’s only going to have more disasters in the near future.”

Clove and Cricket prevented Mountain Valley Pipeline work at the Franklin County site for 6.5 hours! They were then extracted from their blockade and arrested. One friend was charged with 2 misdemeanors and released on $1,500 bail. The other was arraigned but is being held without bail.

Meanwhile, today is day 345 at the Yellow Finch tree sit blockade near Elliston, VA!

Donate to support Cricket, Clove, Yellow Finch, and ongoing resistance to the MVP: bit.ly/supportmvpresistance

 

Two Forest Defenders Blockade Sawmill in Scotia, California

pics from Save the Mattole

Cross-posted from Save the Mattole

Bike blockades deployed today at HRC’s Scotia sawmill, with two forest defenders locking themselves to piles of bicycles, blocking the north and south gates into the mill. The human-bicycle team effort was able to turn away several log trucks heading into the mill before a small army of Humboldt County Sheriff deputies arrived on the scene. Both blockaders refused to unlock, and it took several deputies to carry both the bikes and the blockaders to the side of the road, where they were cited and released (all the bicycles were also released to continue their work against climate change).

Logging trucks blocked out by forest defender blockade.

Unfortunately, in the hubbub, a comrade who was standing by to support was arrested by none other than Conan Moore – the same sheriff who brutalized peaceful protesters in June and later personally extracted blockaders from a monopod and another gate lockdown. The person who was arrested was on the phone with local media when they were handcuffed. They were leaving the property, following orders to disperse. Now, they are being held in Humboldt County Jail on a $25,000 bail, with the deputies recommending felony charges. We are calling for the immediate release of this nonviolent forest defender!

Support arrestees by donating to our legal fund: tinyurl.com/helpforestaresstees

And most of all, support us by joining our efforts! Email efhum@riseup.net