An Open Letter from Environmental & Climate Justice Organizations on May Day

via Climate Workers

An Open Letter from Environmental & Climate Justice Organizations on May Day

Worker power, immigrant rights, and racial justice must be at the heart of environmental and climate movements

As environmental and climate justice organizations, we declare our support for protests planned for International Workers Day (“May Day”), May 1st, 2017 and for workers who choose to participate by honoring the general strike.

International Workers’ Day was first established to commemorate the deaths of workers fighting for the 8-hour work day in Chicago in 1886. It has long been a day to uplift the struggles, honor the sacrifices, and celebrate the triumphs of working people across the world. The day has taken special significance in the U.S. since May 1st, 2006 when 1.5 million immigrants and their allies took to the streets to protest racist immigration policies.

Today, workers face unprecedented attacks on wages, benefits, workplace safety, and the right to organize free from fear and retaliation. But we know that we are all stronger when workers in our communities have safe, fair, and dignified employment with which they can support their families without fear of deportation or violence.

The effects of our fossil fuel economy fall first and worst on working class communities, communities of color, immigrants, and indigenous peoples who have not only contributed the least to climate disruption, but have the least resources to shoulder the burden of a transition to a new, climate-friendly economy. It is these frontline communities who are also at the forefront of change and whose solutions and leadership we most need.

As organizations working to transition our economy away from profit-seeking resource extraction toward ecological resilience and economic democracy, we know that worker power has to be at the heart of that transition.

We urgently need the wisdom and skills of millions of workers to transform our food, water, waste, transit, and energy systems in order to live within the finite resources of this planet that we call home. But the Trump agenda only promises jobs building more prison cells, border walls, bombs, and oil pipelines. Workers deserve not only fair wages, but work that makes our ecosystems and communities more resilient, not destroys them.

Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. No significant social change in this country has come without tremendous risk and sacrifice by ordinary people – from workers who walk off the job to water protectors facing down water cannons and attack dogs.

As environmental and climate justice organizations, we support workers who choose to walk off their jobs on May 1st because we know that the fight to protect land, water, air and soil is inseparable from the fight to protect the life and dignity of workers, migrants, and communities of color.

To workers participating in protests on May 1st, we say: “Thank you. You deserve better. And we’ve got your back.”

To that end, we join with unions and worker-led organizations throughout the country in asking that there be NO RETALIATION against any worker – union or non union – who exercises their rights by taking time off from work on May 1. Further, should workers face retaliation, we pledge our strong support for efforts to defend those workers.

To sign your organization onto letter and to specify what type of support you can pledge, click here.

 

AUTHORED BY

Climate Workers and Movement Generation Justice & Ecology Project

 

SIGNED BY

350.org

350 Bay Area

350 Mass for a Better Future

350 Santa Barbara

Amazon Watch

AMP Creeks Council

Asian Pacific Environmental Network

Azul

Bay Area Justice Funders Network

Bay Area Labor Committee for Peace & Justice

Bay Area System Change Not Climate Change

Beyond Extreme Energy

Blue Heart

California Environmental Justice Alliance

Center for Economic Democracy

Center for Environmental Health

Center for Popular Democracy

Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment

Climate Justice Alliance

Climate Justice Project

Climate Workers

CODEPINK

CoFED

Corporate Accountability International

Diablo Rising Tide

Filipino / American Coalition for Environmental Solidarity (FACES)

Food Empowerment Project

Food First

Friends of Broward Detainees

Friends of the Earth

Fund for Democratic Communities

GAIA: Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives

Global Climate Convergence

Global Environmental Justice Project

Grassroots Global Justice

Greenbelt Climate Action Network

Greenpeace

Groundswell Fund

Industrial Workers of the World

Labor Network for Sustainability

Liberty Tree Foundation

Little Village Environmental Justice Organization

Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment (MORE)

Movement Generation Justice & Ecology Project

Movement Strategy Center

NAACP Portland Branch

National Economic and Social Rights Initiative

New Economy Coalition

New Jim Crow Movement – Vallejo

No Coal in Oakland

North Bay Organizing Project

Oakland Climate Action Coalition

Occidental Arts and Ecology Center

Oil Change International

People’s Action

People’s Climate Movement – Bay Area

PODER (People Organizing to Demand Environmental & Economic Rights)

Post Carbon Institute

Power Shift Network

Pesticide Action Network North America

Planting Justice

Popular Resistance

Railroad Workers United

Raizes Collective

Rainforest Action Network

Real Pickles

Right to the City Boston

Rising Tide North America

Rising Tide Sacramento

Sierra Club

Sierra Club Massachusetts Chapter

Sierra Club San Francisco Bay Chapter

Sonoma County Conservation Action

Students for a Just & Stable Future

Sunflower Alliance

SustainUS

The LEAP

Urban Habitat

U.S. Department of of Arts and Culture

U.S. Federation of Worker Cooperatives

U.S. Human Rights Network

 

April 29th: #FloodTrump is Coming to Washington DC!

April 29th: #FloodTrump is Coming to Washington DC!

As we near the 100-day anniversary of Trump’s presidency, hundreds of thousands will converge in Washington DC for the People’s Climate Mobilization.

RSVP: https://www.facebook.com/events/1807213426198166/

Alongside the major PCM march for jobs, justice, and climate, it’s time to take direct action to keep fossil fuels in the ground, stop dirty oil and gas pipelines, and build a just and sustainable future. Sign up to Flood Trump with action: http://bit.ly/FloodTrump

On SATURDAY, April 29th, immediately following the march, we’ll Flood Trump – we’ll meet up near the National Mall (15th and Constitution) by the Washington Monument. Follow the blue flags to join in, and bring your friends and a message from home to leave with Trump and his oily climate-denying friends. Join a mass sit-in as we share art, music, food, and stories of resistance and strategy about our work back home.

Trump’s ugly agenda of hate and climate denial has made it more clear than ever that climate action must come from the people. The lines in the sand have been drawn, and the stakes couldn’t be higher. The climate showdown is coming – let’s Flood Trump.

SIGN UP HERE: http://bit.ly/FloodTrump

400 March, Seven Arrested While Disrupting Philly TD Bank Locations over Pipeline Financing

standing_rock_rally_sept_2016-20-credit-hanbit-kwonContact: Jed Laucharoen, (917) 291-1910, jedtsada.seas@gmail.com

Over 400 People March in Philly #NoDAPL Solidarity Action

7 Arrested While Disrupting 5 TD Bank Locations over Pipeline Financing

PHILADELPHIA — On Saturday afternoon, over 400 Philadelphia residents marched through Center City in response to a global call for solidarity action against funders of the Dakota Access Pipeline. Thousands of water protectors, led by the Standing Rock Sioux, are camped near pipeline construction in North Dakota. The Camps aim to halt the Dakota Access Pipeline, which would pass beneath the Missouri River, threatening the water supply of millions. The crowd stopped at multiple TD bank locations. Earlier in the day, business was disrupted at 5 TD Bank locations resulting in 7 arrests and several branch closings. TD Bank is one of the top banks financing the Dakota Access Pipeline.

“We in Philly stand with the Standing Rock Sioux today. The Dakota Access Pipeline threatens our Native land, sovereignty and water. We call on TD Bank to stop its funding of the Dakota Access Pipeline and to stand up for Indigenous rights,” said Charlie Under Baggage, Philadelphia resident and citizen of the Oglala Lakota Tribe of the Pine Ridge Reservation.

td2TD Securities has pledged $365M committed to the project, in revolving credit and project-level loans*. It is also a Coordinating Lead Arranger and Joint Bookrunner of a credit agreement with Dakota Access, LLC.

“We know that only by unifying as so many have done in Bismarck, ND and in cities across the United States, we can stop this pipeline and prevent further injustices against Native communities. When we stand with our allies in communities of color, in environmental justice communities and with Indigenous people worldwide, we are unbreakable.” said Liz Ellis, who is Peoria, and a postdoctoral fellow of early American studies at UPenn.

The march was organized by Philly #NoDAPL Solidarity, a coalition of Native Americans and non-Native allies, who have come together to support the Standing Rock Sioux in their struggle, and accelerate the termination of the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Energy Transfer Partners and Sunoco Logistics (together, majority owners of Dakota Access, LLC) are also heavily involved locally, in the Philadelphia Energy Solutions refinery and the Mariner East pipeline. Philly #NoDAPL recognizes the connectedness of these struggles and the need to unify broadly to win.

-###-

Indigenous Grandmothers, Protectors & Defenders Rally and Take Action at the Gates of Shell Oil Refinery in Martinez, CA

Indigenous Grandmothers, Protectors & Defenders Rally and Take Action at the Gates of Shell Oil Refinery in Martinez, CA

via Diablo Rising Tide

shell noMartinez, CA:  Early this morning, more than six people have occupied the main entrance to the Shell Oil refinery on Pacheco Boulevard  in Martinez, CA today to protect and defend the land, air, water and soil from pollutants and to protest the company’s environmental and human rights record. Gathering with several dozen other community members, the group intentionally walked onto Shell’s property with the intention of stopping entry into the refinery.

Today’s action at Shell is in response to the Indigenous Women of the Americas Defending Mother Earth Treaty’s call to non-violently rise up and challenge destructive practices corporate harms to the environment on each Solstice and Equinox. The group’s call is to act to ensure healthy air, water, soil, seeds and a safe climate so that life may continue.

“Humanity can live without fossil fuels.  We cannot live without clean air and water.  The oil industry is poisoning the air, water and climate that is necessary for life to exist.  State regulators have let us all down by irresponsibly allowing the oil industry to pollute the natural systems that were to be set aside for human existence.  We’re here today as grandmothers, mothers, aunts and allies to rise up for the future of life on Mother Earth,” said Pennie Opal Plant of Idle No More SF Bay, “Our actions are prayers for the future of life, for the safety of the refinery workers, and for the corporate directors to remember their place within the system of life.”

Citing concerns around a recent Shell pipeline spill in Northern California and the ever-deteriorating air quality of the Bay Area due to the “Refinery Corridor,” which the Martinez refinery is a part of, and ongoing concerns around the global climate, the group called for Indigenous women and their allies to join them in drawing the line to prevent more harms from destroying the environment that life needs to exist.

In late May, hazardous materials crews were sent to clean up as many as 21,000 gallons of oil after a Shell pipeline rupture in Tracy California. According to a 2012 study from Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) on particulate matter, called Understanding Particulate Matter: Protecting Public Health in the San Francisco Bay Area 1, the Shell and Tesoro refineries in Martinez, CA produce the most hazardous air pollutants (hap) per barrel of oil in the Bay Area refinery corridor. Shell’s Arctic drilling operations have been the subject of much environmental opposition in the Northwest over the past year. Finally, Shell has a long international record of human rights and environmental crimes from Nigeria to Ireland.

Protesters at today’s action said that Shell’s continued operations endanger communities, ecosystems and the climate locally in the Bay Area, regionally up and down the West Coast and abroad.

“I live in constant fear for the health and safety of my community,” said Adrian Wilson, who grew up in Contra Costa County and is taking action today at the gates of Shell. “It’s unfair for us to be exposed to this toxic air pollution. Like every good resident I just want to protect and provide for our safety.”

Groups organizing today’s event include Signers of the Indigenous Women of the Americas Defending Mother Earth Treaty, Idle No More SF Bay and Diablo Rising Tide.

  1. BAAQMD. 2012. Summary of PM Report. Bay Area Air Quality Management District. Accessed 6/15/16.

###

Idle No More SF Bay Area is a group of Native Americans and our allies rising up for the rights of Indigenous People, Mother Earth and the coming generations. You can learn more at https://www.facebook.com/INMSolidaritySF

The Indigenous Women of the Americas Defending Mother Earth Treaty is an historic treaty signed for the first time during UN Climate Week, September 2015.  There are over 100 signers of this treaty from North, Central and South America.

Diablo Rising Tide is the Bay Area chapter of Rising Tide North America network. Rising Tide is an all-volunteer climate network in Canada, the U.S., and Mexico who confront the root causes of climate change with protests, direct action, and grassroots organizing.The larger Rising Tide network spans four continents and works with activists in North and South America, Europe, and Australia.  You can learn more at www.diablorisingtide.org