Water Protectors Rally Outside Gov. Dayton’s Mansion

Youth Climate Intervenor Rose Whipple (Isanti Dakota and Ho-Chunk) spoke to several hundred water protectors gathered outside Gov. Dayton’s mansion.

Three days after the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) approved the Enbridge Line 3 tar sands crude oil pipeline, several hundred people gathered peacefully outside Gov. Mark Dayton’s mansion to press him to take action to stop it.

Today’s event included singing, chanting and speeches highlighting the PUC’s flawed process and the human and environmental damage the pipeline would cause. Participants filled the sidewalk in front of Dayton’s home with chalk art and messages, such as “No jobs on a dead planet,” a reference to Line 3’s climate change impacts, estimated at $287 billion over 30 years. Speakers thanked Gov. Dayton for the strong testimony from his Minnesota Department of Commerce, which argued the pipeline wasn’t needed; they also challenged him to come out publicly against the project.

Water protectors will use multiple approaches to stop the pipeline. They will organized public actions and mass mobilization to bring attention to the issue and put pressure on politicians. They also will bring legal challenges to the deeply flawed process. The Fond du Lac Band of Chippewa already has announced it will appeal the PUC’s decision to the Minnesota Court of Appeals. Other organizations are expected to follow. (See stories in Business Wire and MPR.)

Today’s event was sponsored by Stop Line 3, and co-hosted by Honor the Earth, MN 350, Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light, and the Sierra Club’s North Star Chapter.

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