Community Members Occupy Jordan Cove LNG Portland Office Lobby in Solidarity with Impacted Landowners

Pics via NO LNG EXPORTS Oregon. ?

via Portland Rising Tide

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Wednesday, May 22nd, 2019

Contact: Dineen O’Rourke, dineen@350pdx.org, 631.830.7478

Community Members Occupy Jordan Cove LNG Portland Office Lobby in Solidarity with Impacted Landowners

[Portland, OR] On Wednesday, May 22nd, from 11AM-1PM Over seventy community members gathered inside the lobby of the Jordan Cove LNG Portland office (11 SW 5th Avenue) to demonstrate opposition to the the proposed fracked gas project in solidarity with impacted landowners in Southern Oregon.

The Jordan Cove LNG project is a proposed 229-mile pipeline and export terminal to transport fracked gas through Southern Oregon to markets in Asia. The pipeline threatens the private property rights of hundreds of landowners, tribal lands and cultural resources, and 400 rivers and streams. The highly volatile LNG export terminal is proposed in an earthquake and tsunami zone on the coast and places over 16,000 Coos Bay residents in an hazardous burn zone.

If built, the Jordan Cove LNG export terminal alone would become the largest source of climate pollution in the state of Oregon. The full annual climate emissions from this project would be equal to another 7.9 million passenger vehicles on the streets according to a report from Oil Change International.

Pics via NO LNG EXPORTS Oregon.

Inside the office lobby, video messages were screened from Southern Oregon landowners whose property would be subject to eminent domain for the proposed fracked gas pipeline. Community members also joyfully listened to anti-fossil fuel folk music, ate blueberry pie (symbolic of potentially impacted blueberry fields), and wrote comments to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Large banners in the lobby read, “Protect What You Love”, “No LNG”, and “No Pipelines Anywhere”.

For 15 years, rural landowners, Tribal representatives, youth, environmental advocates, and other residents have mobilized to stop Jordan Cove LNG, which was originally denied by FERC in 2016. Just a few weeks ago, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) denied a Clean Water Act permit that the project cannot move forward without. The company still has permit applications pending at the local, state, and federal levels.

“Jordan Cove has threatened us with eminent domain for over a decade,” said Francis Eatherington, landowner in Douglas County. “Though they recently moved the route off our property, it is now much closer to the house, and so we are still threatened with the effects of a gas explosion. And what will happen when a forest fire burns over the block valve that’s cited near us?”

“Jordan Cove and Pembina have been pressuring landowners to sell permanent access to our land for their dangerous export project,” said Stacey McLaughlin, a landowner impacted by the pipeline. “They have caused us years of stress about the fate of our home and livelihood. I want them to pull their permit applications and stop torturing us.”

At the rally, people called on Governor Kate Brown to deny all state permits for this unpopular and unnecessary project and expressed concerns about the impacts of recent Trump pro-pipeline executive orders.

“Jordan Cove LNG is not welcome in Southern Oregon and it’s not welcome here in Portland either.” said Audrey Caines with Portland Rising Tide. “We will continue to stand with communities in Southern Oregon to fight Jordan Cove LNG until this climate disaster is stopped for good.”

Portland Rising Tide, a local all volunteer grassroots group that takes direct action to confront the root causes of climate change, organized today’s rally. They were joined by community members with 350pdx, Sunrise Movement PDX, DSA Eco Socialists, and individuals representing their own demands to end this pipeline project.

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Rising Tide North America Statement on Trump’s Withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement

San Francisco, CA– Today, the Trump Administration announced that they were pulling out of the Paris Climate Agreement. Rising Tide North America responded with the following statement:

“In unsurprising news today, Donald J. Trump announced that the United States would be formally withdrawing from the Global Agreement on Climate Change finalized in Paris in December 2015.

Fulfilling yet another promise made in the 2016 election, Trump’s decision clearly demonstrates his callous disregard for our shared planet and for the communities that are bearing the brunt of violent changes in our climate and weather patterns.  While the administration’s decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement is an inexcusable step backward in confronting the challenge of dramatic climate change it is not a particularly dramatic departure from the status quo approach to climate change that we have seen from both major political parties in the United States.

While the Paris Climate Agreement was widely applauded by mainstream environmental organizations, the agreement represents a global consensus on a neo-liberal corporate approach to global warming. The final deal, signed by over 200 nations, favored the rights and voices of corporations over the rights and voices of people across the planet. It excluded the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, omitted reparations to the Global South and lacked significant mechanics to implement its stated aspirational goal of reaching 1.5 degrees warming. Essentially, the Paris Climate Agreement represented false hope to large well-funded environmental groups and liberal governments across the planet.

While the Paris Agreement and the neo-liberal global consensus certainly falls far short of meaningfully addressing the current climate crisis, the rising authoritarianism and denial of climate science exhibited by the Trump administration embodies an even more dangerous direction. The appointment of right-wing climate denying politicians and fossil fuel executives into powerful positions at the Departments of State, Interior, Energy and the Environmental Protection Agency is troubling sign that struggles around environmental and climate justice will be more difficult. Furthermore, Trump’s disturbing rhetoric from global warming being a hoax perpetrated by the Chinese to the criminalization of migrants, Muslims and many others further signals that truth, reason and equity are continued fabrications in the White House.

Regardless of the status of global climate agreements, we still live in a moment that demands people-powered escalation against the corporate state. As it becomes more and more apparent that the state is not interested in–or capable of–addressing the current climate crisis we must recognize that it is the responsibility of communities across the country and around the world to engage in bold direct action to stop the fossil fuel industry and build an equitable and ecologically sound future..

Today, as oil began flowing through the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) and new revelations about DAPL’s parent company, Energy Transfer Partners, hiring a private mercenary firm to run a counterinsurgency operation against water protectors in North Dakota and elsewhere, Rising Tide North America will continue to stand in solidarity with movements and people directly affected by the climate crisis. We will continue to build people-powered movements in response to these threats upon all of our lives. We will organize direct action that mobilizes people to challenge ongoing racism, imperialism and capitalism perpetrated by politicians and corporations throughout the world.

Relying on governments and trying to work with corporations has been the dominant strategy of the mainstream environmental movement as a whole for over 50 years. This has failed, utterly. Only by relying on each other, taking risks, and escalating – even in the face of the ongoing criminalization of direct action– can we preserve a livable, just planet for all.”

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Rising Tide North America is an all-volunteer anti-capitalist climate justice network working to challenge the root cause of climate change.