FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE* * Contact: Annie Banks Phone: 415-728-1134 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org In solidarity with a global day of actions happening all over North America on March 30, a group called Anti-Colonial Queer Action (ACQA) traveled from San Francisco to San Ramon, CA (Ohlone Territories), where Chevron has its global headquarters, to demonstrate against fracking pipelines on Unist’ot’en and Wet’suwet’en territories and deliver a message from the Unist’ot’en to Chevron. ACQA hoisted a banner that stated “No Fracking Pipelines on Indigenous Territories,” to the flagpoles outside of Chevron’s compound at 6001 Bollinger Canyon Rd. Afterwards, members of ACQA read out and delivered a letter, written by Unist’ot’en spokesperson Freda Huson. The letter outlines the Unist’ot’en’s inalienable rights to their lands and to defend their lands. Chevron Corporation and all associated investors have acquired 50% ownership of the proposed Pacific Trail Pipeline project, a project which has already been evicted from Unist’ot’en lands. The letter is a warning of trespass to anyone who is infringing upon traditional Wet’suwet’en territory. “The Unist’ot’en Camp is a resistance community created to ensure that no pipelines will ever cross Unist’ot’en traditional territory. They act to protect the land and the increasingly unstable climate, to do what is best for future generations.” - “Stop Fracking Chevron” flyer Chevron’s impacts reach from up north in Unist’ot’en territory down to the Bay Area and around the world. In the Bay Area, Chevron’s emissions from their Richmond refinery are responsible for impacting the health of frontline communities, which are primarily communities of color. Impacted communities around the Bay Area have been organizing against the harms from Chevron’s toxic emissions. # # # Read the Unist’ot’en’s letter here: http://calamites.resist.ca/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Chevron-Letter.pdf Stop Fracking Chevron Flyer here: http://calamites.resist.ca/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Chevron-Flyer.pdf Unist’ot’en Camp website: http://unistotencamp.com/
—For Immediate Release—
MEDIA RELEASE: March 20, 2013
Press Inquiries: Ron Seifert, Tar Sands Blockade, 940-268-5375, email@example.com
Over 30 protests as part of Week of Action to Stop Tar Sands Profiteers held by over 50 grassroots organizations take on corporate investors bankrolling the toxic Keystone XL tar sands pipeline
Wednesday, March 20, 2013- One month after the largest climate rally in U.S. history urged President Obama to deny the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline’s northern segment, protesters in dozens of cities throughout the U.S. are confronting KXL’s corporate backers directly.
Thirty-seven have been arrested over the last ten days for disrupting business as usual at TransCanada and their investors’ offices, with more are planned before the week is over.
The March 16-23 Week of Action to Stop Tar Sands Profiteers, in solidarity with Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance’s Direct Action Camp in Ponca City, Oklahoma, is endorsed by over 50 grassroots environmental organizations around the country. Organizers seek to expose green-washed corporations like TD Bank, a top shareholder in TransCanada, and force them to divest from the controversial Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
“Its encouraging to see people around the country taking action to stop tar sands profiteers,” said Ron Seifert, spokesperson for Tar Sands Blockade. “No longer will we allow them to build KXL and invest in toxic projects that endanger the health of low-income and communities of color. We will not allow “business as usual” to continue.”
Here are a few highlights from the Week of Action so far:
- 100 people occupied a TransCanada’s office in Westborough, MA, holding a “Funeral for Our Future” and disrupting work for several hours. Twenty-five were arrested for locking themselves inside the office: http://www.tarsandsblockade.org/funeralforourfuture/
- TD Bank branches have seen protests at multiple locations including three people who were arrested for locking themselves inside a branch office in Washington, DC. http://www.tarsandsblockade.org/weekofaction-day4/
- Twelve people arrested for blockading a fracking pipeline in upstate New York: http://ourfutureisunfractured.wordpress.com/
- Portland, Oregon held a bike tour of the city’s worst polluters including a rally at a TransCanada office: http://www.tarsandsblockade.org/weekofaction-day3/
- Dozens of activists in grim-reaper garb surround Michels Corporate office in Kirkland, WA, demanding that Michels stop building KXL: http://www.tarsandsblockade.org/weekofaction-day3/
Check www.tarsandsblockade.org for live updates from actions around the country. At least 18 more actions are planned between now and Saturday, March 23rd, including six more actions against TD Bank in New York City, Washington D.C., Montpellier, VT, Newark, DE, New Haven, CT, and Asheville, NC.
One of the largest events of the week will be tomorrow, Thursday, March 21 in Oklahoma. Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance is taking action to physically stop KXL construction. Read more here: http://gptarsandsresistance.org/
Check out the growing resistance to fossil fuels extraction and combustion:
Youth Minister Ascends Equipment at TransCanada Construction Site in Oklahoma
Stefan Warner, a youth pastor who was born and raised in OK, locked himself to machinery being used to build the toxic Keystone XL tar sands pipeline near Schoolton, OK. Warner is acting with Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance, a coalition of Oklahomans and allies fighting to prevent construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline which will bring dangerous and toxic diluted bitumen from the biome-consuming Tar Sands giga project to refinery communities in the Gulf. In addition to Warner, seven others were arrested.
Rising Tide Vancouver, Coast Salish Territories Action Against Enbridge Pipeline
Last month Rising Tide Vancouver, Coast Salish Territories took action with fifty other groups against the Tar Sands pipeline proposed by Enbridge. A noise demo was held that showed Enbridge, the Joint Review Panel, and any other entity that wants to put in pipelines without consent, that communities will not stay silent. Over 1,000 people participated and the noise was clearly held inside the hearing. Six people were arrested after making their way inside the building. The action was in solidarity with those on the frontlines to say that communities have the right to say NO.
Idle No More World Day of Action and Tar Sands Blockade
The Tar Sands Blockade, Rising Tide Alaska and many other groups joined the Idle No More World Day of Action. In Texas, Blockaders joined with indigenous people representing Idle No More and the American Indian Genocide Museum for a rally at the Canadian Consulate in downtown Houston. People flew signs and banners, sang songs, and played drums before trying to deliver a letter of their demands to the consulate. Actions as part of the Tar Sands Blockade also continued with a lockdown at an oil and gas conference and a die-in at the Houston TransCanada offices.
The Tar Sands Blockade have also called for a week of action to stop Tar Sands profiteers from March 16-23. There will also be a action camp for Tar Sands resistance organized by the Great Plains Coalition in Oklahoma.
Read more about Idle No More.
Read the solidarity statement signed by organizations including Rising Tide North America with Idle No More.
Shadbush Environmental Justice Collective Lock Down for Food and Farms, Not Fracking!
January 27th, residents of Western Pennsylvania and friends of Lawrence County farmer Maggie Henry locked themselves to a giant paper-mache pig in the entrance to a Shell natural gas well site in order to protest the company’s threat to local agriculture and food safety. The newly-constructed gas well is located less than 4,000 feet from Henry’s organic pig farm. Prior to this action, Maggie exhausted all avenues to prevent or shut down the well through the legal system. Supporters of her farm have also held previous protests at the site. Despite the heightened risks posed by the abandoned wells in the area, Shell is moving forward with their operations, and Maggie’s supporters have turned to civil disobedience.
Deconstruction of the Crawford Coal Plant in Chicago Begins
The deconstruction of the Crawford coal plant in the Little Village neighborhood of Chicago began in January. The closure of these power plants last year was a campaign that Rising Tide Chicago and many other community organizations have worked on over the years. This and the other coal fired power plant were the last in any major US city. The work of Rising Tide helps make sure this will be a scene that repeats itself with greater and greater frequency!
Action against Chevron in Solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en Nation
On January 5th many action were held in solidarity with a call by the Wet’suwet’en Nation to take action against Chevron for their move, revealed on Christmas Eve, to purchase a full 50% share of the Pacific Trails natural gas pipeline, effectively taking over the project. The actions continued resistance to the pipeline including when on November 20, 2012, the Wet’suwet’en located several petroleum surveyors within their territory, and ordered them to leave. The surveyors were trespassing on indigenous lands, and they were given only one warning of eviction. These men worked for Can-Am Geomatics, a mapping and engineering firm hired by the Apache Corporation, the lead company in Kitimat LNG (liquified natural gas), the consortium heading the Pacific Trails Pipeline project (PTP). The PTP is a plan to construct pipelines to pump hydraulically fracked natural gas and tar sands crude oil from Alberta through We’suwet’en territory to British Columbia’s pacific coast for export.
- Activists crash Bank of America recruiting event at UC Berkeley to protest coal funding
- Rising Tide Vermont and Green Mountain Earth First! “die-in” at tar sands investment conference in Connecticut
- RAMPS and Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment lockdown inside Arch Coal Headquarters in St. Louis
- Groups blockade Peabody Headquarters in St. Louis, eleven arrested
- Students for a Just and Stable future blockade TransCanada office in Massachusetts
- Oklahoma woman locks her neck to Keystone XL Construction Equipment
- Support the Indiegogo for the Unist’ot’en Action Camp
- Mountain Justice Spring Breaks: March 2-10 & March 10-17
- Tar Sands Blockade week of action to stop Tar Sands profiteers from March 16-23
- Action camp in Ponca City for tar sands resistance March 18th – 22nd
- Appalachia Resist! to Host 2013 Earth First! Organizers Conference and Winter Rendezvous, Feb. 14-18
Earlier this morning, Stefan Warner, a youth pastor who was born and
raised in Harrah, OK, locked himself to machinery being used to build the
toxic Keystone XL tar sands pipeline through Creek land by treaty near
Schoolton, OK. Warner is taking action to protect the North Canadian River
the health of the towns and land it runs through from being irreversibly
damaged by diluted bitumen (tar sands) leaks and spills, as well as to
send a clear message that the current day colonialism and disregard for
the health and sovereignty of indigenous peoples in Alberta and along
the pipeline is unacceptable—from a Christian perspective, as well as a
Tar sands pipelines have a horrendous track record: the existing
Keystone 1 pipeline leaked twelve times in its first year, and at least
thirty times to date. In 2010, the added dangers of tar sands pipelines
were demonstrated by Enbridge’s Line 6B pipeline spill of over a million
gallons of diluted bitumen into the Kalamazoo River in Michigan. The
Kalamazoo Tar Sands spill is the costliest inland spill in United States
history, draining the oil spill coffers and placing the $800 million and
rising price tag onto the backs of local and federal taxpayers. But it
is not the monetary burden that weighs heaviest; the toll on human life,
health and local ecosystems is immeasurable, and in the immediate, the
toxicity of the diluted bitumen and undisclosed proprietary chemicals
has proven devastating.
In addition to the immense dangers posed by the Keystone XL, TransCanada
has been misrepresenting the economic effects of the pipeline. The
majority of construction jobs are temporary and have been filled by
Wisconsin-based contractor Michel’s, not Oklahomans and Texans. Despite
TransCanada and the State Department’s rhetoric of energy independence,
the diluted bitumen transported by the Keystone XL is destined for
export to foreign markets after being refined in Gulf Coast refineries,
and the National Resources Defense Council asserts that the KXL will
increase domestic gas prices.
“I grew up in a town where the North Canadian River runs right through,
and we can’t let the North Canadian become another Kalamazoo ,” said
Oklahoman youth pastor Stefan Warner. “I figure folks have to take action to
stop our beautiful Oklahoma from being marred by a foreign corporation,
and stand up to fight big corporations who think that poisoning people
and stealing land is acceptable so long as they make a profit.”
Warner is acting with Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance, a coalition of
Oklahomans and allies fighting to prevent construction of the Keystone
XL which will bring dangerous and toxic diluted bitumen from the
biome-consuming Tar Sands gigaproject to refinery communities in the
Gulf. This action comes in the wake of dozens of similar actions which
have actively fought construction of the Keystone XL in Oklahoma and
Texas. In light of reports of shoddy welding by TransCanada
whistleblower Evan Vokes and the recent release of photographs depicting
holes in the weld of a pipe buried in Texas, the struggle to keep the
Keystone XL from being completed is even more urgent.