Line 3 Civil Disobedience Continues, Pushing Back on a Flawed, Immoral Decision

Water Protectors opposing the Enbridge Line 3 tar sands crude oil pipeline blocked a bridge near Bemidji Tuesday, erecting a tepee and holding a water ceremony, according to an MPR story.

No arrests were made, but it’s the latest in a series of actions against the pipeline. On Sept. 11, water protectors disrupted and delayed a Minnesota Public Utilities Commission vote on Line 3 permit conditions. On Aug. 29, water protectors blocked a Bemidji intersection for four hours. Other volunteers took their laptops and tablets to Gov. Mark Daytons’ reception room and live streamed the event, an effort to pressure him to get off the fence and take a stand against Line 3. In Bemidji, 26 people received disorderly conduct citations and face mandatory court appearances.

Sadly, Dayton remains silent on whether he thinks Minnesotans should have this crude oil pipeline shoved down their proverbial throats.

Work to stop this project is ongoing. Here’s a few action steps:

  • Sign a petition telling Gov. Dayton that Line 3 is a danger to our community.
  • Sign a Pledge of Resistance to Line 3, with options ranging from hosting an event to participating in a direct action.
  • Call Dayton’s Office directly: 651-201-3400

Continue reading

Advertisements

Water Protectors Ask You To Call Gov. Dayton to Stop Line 3!

Water Protectors occupied an intersection in downtown Bemidji Wednesday to put Gov. Dayton on notice that opposition to Enbridge Line 3 is not going away.

By Scott Russell

Approximately 50 Anishinaabe leaders, faith leaders, and environmental activists occupied an intersection in downtown Bemidji for about three hours Wednesday to continue to bring attention to the tremendous risks posed by the Enbridge Line 3 tar sands pipeline and to pressure Gov. Mark Dayton to take a stand opposing it.

Simultaneous to the Bemidji action, other water protectors occupied the anteroom at Dayton’s Capitol office with laptops to Live Stream the event. Twenty-six water protectors eventually received disorderly conduct citations from Bemidji police when they refused the order to disperse.

Dayton has declined to take a position on Line 3. For the past year, he has said he wanted to wait and let the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) make its decision. That decision came in June, and it was irresponsible. The PUC went against the advice of state regulators and the Administrative Law Judge reviewing the proposal and approved Line 3.

The project threatens Minnesota’s clean waters and the world’s climate. The main beneficiary is a large Canadian corporation.

Dayton’s silence is his tacit approval with the project moving forward. The action was meant to let Dayton know that opposition is not going away.

Call the Governor at 651-201-3400 or 800-657-3717 and let him know that you expect him to do everything in his power to ensure that the Line 3 tar sands pipeline is never built.

Continue reading

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.

News Updates: Faith Leaders Stepping Up to Oppose Line 3; U.S. Crude Exports Hit Record High; and More

Here’s a quick news wrap on issues related to Enbridge Line 3.

‘This is a moral issue’: Faith leaders team up against Line 3 oil pipeline: MPR reports on a Monday event where religious leaders from different faith traditions are speaking with one voice against the Enbridge Line 3 tar sands pipeline. The event starts at 2 p.m. just west of the Capitol in Leif Erickson Park.

Comment: Here is the Facebook event page with more details. Hope you can join us! (The event is being sponsored by Minnesota Interfaith Power and Light and the Poor People’s Campaign, a National Call for Moral Revival. The campaign is uniting 40+ states in 40 days of action around the impacts of and connections between Structural Poverty, Systemic Racism, Ecological Devastation, and the War Economy.)

U.S. Oil Exports Eat Into OPEC Market Share In Asia. The website OilPrice.com is reporting that U.S. Asian crude oil exports are increasing. (OPEC and Russian agreed to production cuts, an apparent effort to boost prices.) According to the story:

The United States is expected to export 2.3 million [barrels per day] of crude oil in June, including 1.3 million [barrels per day] bound for Asia, according to estimates by a senior executive at a U.S. oil exporter who spoke to Reuters.

U.S. crude exports hit a record high 2.566 million [barrels per day in the second week of May, EIA [U.S. Energy Information Administration] data shows.

Comment: While the U.S. is still a net crude oil importer, it’s important to note that our crude oil exports are peaking. It says we are importing more crude oil than we need for our own energy security. In addition, according EIA data, the United States is now a net exporter of finished petroleum products (gasoline, kerosene, fuel oil, etc.) This should be sufficient reason for the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to reject Enbridge Line 3, which seeks to increase Canadian crude oil imports into the United Stats. It is not needed.

Gov. Dayton Vetoes ‘Guilty by Association’ Bill that Favored Outside Corporate Interests Over MN Democracy. The Land Stewardship Project reports that Gov. Mark Dayton vetoed “a bill driven by outside corporate interests with the intent to chill dissent and curtail free speech. The ‘Guilty by Association bill would have imposed criminal and financial liability on those who attend or support a peaceful protest where critical infrastructure is damaged by a separate individual. During the announcement, Governor Dayton said he was concerned it could lead to conspiracy charges for ‘mere conversations.’”

Comment:  This is a win. Thank you, Gov. Dayton!

Canadian Government announces it will purchase Kinder Morgan Pipeline for 3.45 billion US. Indian Country Today reports that the Canadian government “will purchase the Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline — a controversial pipeline that runs from the Alberta oil sands to the country’s pacific coast — for $3.45 billion.”

Comment: This is a blow to the provincial government of British Columbia which had opposed the project. It also means there are other outlets for the Alberta Tar Sands Oil to get to market other than through northern Minnesota.

Block (Line 3) Party at the PUC: An Act of Celebration and Resistance

Part of the two-day Block Party opposing Enbridge Line 3 included a Water Ceremony at the Mississippi River, led by Sharon Day. (Photos by Scott Russell)
Camp Turtle Island erected a tipi in front of the PUC offices and members spent the night there.

In a month, the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) is expected to take a final vote on key permits for the Enbridge Line 3 tar sands pipeline through northern Minnesota. Indigenous and environmental groups kept up the pressure opposing the project by hosting a two-day Block Party right in front of PUC offices in downtown St. Paul.

It was called the “Block (Line 3) Party at the PUC,” and it was both a celebration and an act of resistance. The May 18-19 event included a meeting with Gov. Mark Dayton’s staff around pipeline issues, a community meal prepared by indigenous grandmothers, a silk screening tent, a water ceremony led by Sharon Day (an Anishinaabe Water Walker), community education, Line 3 updates, and a music concert featuring Annie Humphrey, Jayanthi Kyle, Thomas X and See More Perspective.

Rose Whipple, one of the Youth Climate Intervenors, spoke.

Line 3 is a bad idea, a proposal putting the interests of Canadian oil transportation giant Enbridge and larger oil processing firms over the interests of Minnesotans. Approving Line 3 would set a bad precedent for relocating other Enbridge pipelines throughout the state, increasing harm to the state’s environment, indigenous peoples, and anyone who cares about its waters. Several hundred people attended the event to show their opposition to the pipeline.

Debra Topping, a member of the Fond du Lac Band of Ojibwe, and one of the Block Party organizers, was one of many speakers: “Every day I wake up there is something to fight about,” she said “Every single day we get up and fight for our wild rice.”

Continue reading