#NoPipelines: International Actions Against Oil and Gas Pipelines In Solidarity with Unist'ot'en Camp
Press release below via Unist'ot'en Camp, a resistance community [in "British Columbia," Canada], whose purpose is to protect sovereign Wet'suwet'en territory from several proposed pipelines from the Tar Sands Gigaproject and shale gas from Hydraulic Fracturing Projects in the Peace River Region. To support the camp, donations can be made at http://forestaction.wikidot.com/caravan. To promote and follow the actions on social media, follow @UnistotenCamp, use #nopipelines, and find them here on Facebook.
For a full list of actions and more information: http://unistotencamp.wordpress.com/2012/11/23/solidarity-actions/ To find out about resistance to pipeline projects in the U.S., please check out the Tar Sands Blockade against the Keystone XL Pipeline and the Occupy the Pipeline project here in NYC. See also our recent article "Relief Is Not Enough" on the need for climate solidarity actions!
Actions are taking place across Canada and internationally on Tuesday November 27 in support of the Unis’tot’en, who grabbed national headlines when they evicted shale gas pipeline surveyors from their territories in the interior of BC last week. The Unis’tot’en have made it clear that no proposed pipelines will proceed in Unist’ot’en territories and that corporations, investors, and governments have no jurisdiction to approve development on their lands.
On November 20, Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chief Toghestiy intercepted and issued an eagle feather to surveyors from the Can-Am Geomatics company, working for Apache’s proposed shale gas Pacific Trails Pipeline. In Wet’suwet’en law, an eagle feather is used as a first and only notice of trespass. The surveyors were ordered to leave the territory and the road entering into the territory has been closed to all industry activities until further notice.
Since July of 2010, the Wet’suwet’en have established a camp in the pathway of the Pacific Trails Pipeline. Likhts’amisyu hereditary chief Toghestiy states, “Unist’ot’en and Grassroots Wet’suwet’en have consistently stated that they will not allow such a pipeline to pass through their territory. The federal and provincial governments, as well as Indian Act tribal councils or bands, have no right or jurisdiction to approve development on Unist’ot’en lands. By consulting only with elected Indian Act tribal councils and bands, the Canadian government breaks its own laws as outlined in the 1997 Supreme Court of Canada Delgamuukw decision which recognizes Hereditary adjudication processes.”
Freda Huson, spokeswoman for the Unist’ot’en Clan, states: “Pacific Trails Pipeline does not have permission to be on our territory. This is unceded land. Through emails and in meetings, we have repeatedly said NO. Pacific Trail Pipeline’s proposed route is through two main salmon spawning channels which provide our staple food supply. We have made the message clear to Pacific Trails, Enbridge, and all of industry: We will not permit any pipelines through our territory.”
The Unist’ot’en clan is against all pipelines slated to cross through their territories. This includes Enbridge Northern Gateway, Pacific Trails, Coast Gas Link, Kinder Morgan’s northern proposal, and others. Pacific Trails Pipeline is the most pressing and immediate threat to the community. Enbridge pipeline would be built side by side to – with essentially the same right of way as Pacific Trails, thus raising concerns that the Pacific Trails Pipeline might ‘blaze a trail’ for the Enbridge project.
Brigette Depape, known as the Rogue Page for standing up in Senate with a Stop Harper sign, is lending her support to the Unist’ot’en, “I believe we will stop the agendas of reckless governments and industries because of strong leadership from communities like the Unis’tot’en as they take action against irresponsible pipelines.”
According to the Canadian Center for Policy Alternatives, much of the shale gas produced in BC is currently destined for Alberta, where it is used as fuel in the tar sands. While industry sells fracking as a “green transition fuel,” Robert Howarth from Cornell University emphasizes that “Shale gas is worse than conventional gas, and is, in fact, worse than coal and worse than oil.”
The Council of Canadians, one of Canada’s largest organizations, is supporting the day of action. Chairperson Maude Barlow has recently written, “The Enbridge Northern Gateway, Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain and the Pacific Trails Pipelines would put the economic interests of industry ahead of people and communities. These pipelines would add more tanker traffic to BC’s pristine coastlines, expand fracking and tar sands industries, increase climate pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, and violate First Nations rights to hunt, trap, and fish on their land and to make decisions about the future of their traditional territories. We need to do everything we can to turn the tap off to these pipelines.”
Judy Da Silva of the Asubpeeschoseewagong (Grassy Narrows) Land Defenders states, “The Asubpeeschoseewagong Land Defenders stand with the Unist’ot’en. When we come together to protect the land, we are doing it for all of our future generations. This government and all of industry needs to understand that no means no. We will not sacrifice our lands, cultures, and children for their greed.”
Unist’ot’en: Unist’ot’en (C’ihlts’ehkhyu / Big Frog Clan) are a clan of the Wet’suwet’en nation. The Wet’suwet’en are made up of five clans, with territories that they are expected to manage for their future generations. Neither the Unist’ot’en People or the other Grassroots Wet’suwet’en are associated with the Office of the Wet’suwet’en.
Pacific Trails Pipeline: Pacific Trails Pipeline is a $1 billion partnership between Apache Canada, Encana Corporation, and EOG Resources (Enron Oil and Gas). Royal Bank of Canada, the largest financier of oil and gas companies operating in the tar sands and the second largest financier of Enbridge, is also a major investor in Encana. In fact, David P. O’Brien, Chairman of the Board of Encana, is also the Chairman of the Board of Royal Bank of Canada. The 463-kilometer pipeline would connect a liquefied natural gas terminal in Kitimat to Summit Lake near Prince George in northeastern BC, with the aim of transporting upto 1 million cubic feet of natural gas per day extracted through hydraulic fracturing of shale gas (fracking), to international markets through supertankers. The BC government approved the pipeline’s expanded capacity in April 2012.
Asubpeeschoseewagong Land Defenders: This week marks the 10 year anniversary of the Grassy Narrows Asubpeeschoseewagong Anishinabek blockade in northern Ontario. For the past decade, the community has maintained a blockade that has held off some of the world’s largest paper corporations from logging their territories.
What is Wrong with Fracking? While industry sells fracking as a “green transition fuel,” ecologist specialist Robert Howarth from Cornell University, says it clearly: “Shale gas is worse than conventional gas, and is, in fact, worse than coal and worse than oil.” A number of doctors, including the chief medical officer at the U.S. National Center for Environmental Health and the New Brunswick College of Family Physicians, have called for a moratorium on fracking. A number of jurisdictions, including France, Quebec, and New York, currently have moratoriums on fracking. Last year, three Kainai women from the Blood Tribe in southern Alberta were arrested for preventing a column of trucks from leaving a Murphy Oil well site and vowing not to move until fracking plans were stopped.
The November 27th call to action is issued by the Unist’ot’en and grassroots Wet’suwet’en and is supported by Algonquins of Barriere Lake, Anishinabek Oshkimaadiziig Unity Camp, Anti-Colonial Solidarity Collective-Montreal, Asubpeeschoseewagong (Grassy Narrows) Land Defenders, Boreal Forest Network, Canadian Union of Public Employees Local 3903 First Nations Solidarity Working Group, Climate Justice Research/Action (Science for Peace), Council of Canadians, Deep Green Resistance, Independent Jewish Voices-Toronto, Indigenous Action Movement, Indigenous Defenders of the Land Network, Indigenous Environmental Network, Indigenous Network on Economies and Trade, Indigenous Peoples Solidarity Movement-Ottawa, Indigenous People’s Solidarity Movement-Winnipeg, Indigenous Reoccupation of Ancestral Lands- Ancestral Pride Ahousaht Sovereign Territory, Indigenous Sovereignty and Solidarity Network-Toronto, International League of People’s Struggles-Canada, Leadnow, Média Recherche Action, Mining Justice Alliance, Mother Earth Justice Advocates, Native Youth Movement, No One Is Illegal-Toronto, No One Is Illegal-Vancouver Coast Salish Territories, Rising Tide-Vancouver Coast Salish Territories, Rising Tide-Toronto, ShitHarperDid, Sierra Club-Prairie Chapter, Stop the Pave, Streams of Justice, Submedia.tv, Tadamon, Toronto Bolivia Solidarity, Truth Fool, Turning the Tide Bookstore, Vancouver Island Community Forest Action Network.
List of actions:
Trinidad: Canadian High Commission at 10:30 am. 3-3A Sweet Briar Rd., St. Clair, Port of Spain, Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. Organized by Rights Action Group and Trini Eco Warriors.
Chico, California: Noon at Kinder Morgan Chico Terminal, 2570 Hegan Lane.
Edmonton: Noon at Royal Bank, 10843 82 Avenue Northwest.
Hamilton: Noon at Royal Bank, Jackson Square.
Kamloops: Noon in front of TNRD public library main branch, 465 Victoria.
Montreal: à 10h00 en face du Banque Royale du Canada- 1 Place Ville Marie (Coin University et René Levesque).
Prince George: 10 am in front of the Carrier Sekani Tribal Council building and Royal Bank main branch, 1460 6th Ave.
Regina: Noon at Royal Bank, 11th & Hamilton.
Smithers, Unceded Gitdumden territory: Noon at the Royal Bank on Main and Broadway.
Toronto: 11 am. Demo at Royal Bank Headquarters, Bay and Front.
Vancouver, Coast Salish Territories: Noon at Apache Canada, 200 Burrard St (corner Cordova).
Victoria: Noon at Royal Bank Main Branch, 1079 Douglas.