Category Archives: BREAKING NEWS

Monkton and Cornwall homeowners “knitting-​in” at VGS Office

July 2, 2014. Source: Rising Tide Vermont

Photo from Rising Tide VT

Photo from Rising Tide VT

Monkton and Cornwall homeowners are currently staging a “knit-in” at Vermont Gas Systems’ headquarters, occupying the main lobby and demanding the company stop tying to scare peaceful protestors and landowners with false allegations and eminent domain. Jane Palmer, Maren Vasatka and Claire Broughton, all of Monkton, and Mary Martin of Cornwall live in the path of the proposed fracked gas pipeline. They are joined by Charlotte resident Rebecca Foster.They said they won’t leave until Vermont Gas publicly admits to illegally trespassing on land in Addison County, agrees to not use eminent domain to build the pipeline and stops trying to use scare tactics against peaceful protestors engaged in nonviolent civil disobedience at the Vermont Gas offices.

Jane Palmer, who said Vermont Gas agents have already trespassed on her land when they violated a right-of-entry agreement, plans to stay until Vermont Gas meets her demands or has her removed from the premises.
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BREAKING: Activists blocking Bristol offices of Alpha Natural Resources

June 20, 2014. Source: Mountain Justice

Photo from Mountain Justice

Photo from Mountain Justice

Three activists demanding an end to mountaintop removal, block entrance to corporate office, stop business as usual.

Three activists with Mountain Justice and Radical Action for Mountains and People’s Survival (RAMPS) are currently stopping business as usual at Alpha Natural Resources headquarters in Bristol, VA, in protest of Alpha’s devastating practices of mountaintop removal coal mining. Activists were protesting the opening of new mines on Coal River Mountain in southern West Virginia. Two protestors are locked in front of the front doors of the office, while a third is hanging from a flag pole displaying a banner that reads “Save Coal River Mountain”

“That mountain is the mountain I learned to hunt on, it’s the mountain that’s sustained my family for generations.  I’ll be a dead man before I see them take what’s left up there,” said Junior Walk, of West Virginia. Walk lives in the Coal River Valley, directly below Alpha operations on Coal River Mountain. Alpha recently began blasting on the 264 acre Collins Fork mine.  Local residents and activists have opposed surface mining on Coal River Mountain since the late 1990s. Continue reading

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Unist’ot’en Clan Refuse All Pipeline Projects: A Video Message

 

Asserting Indigenous Law Over Unceded Lands

Source: Reclaim Turtle Island

-FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE- June 18th, 2014 [Unist’ot’en Territory - near Smithers, BC]   Amid threats of a raid and impending pipeline approvals, the Unist’ot’en Clan of the Wet’suwet’en Nation are prepared to continue to defend their territories against the incursion of government and industry. A soft blockade was erected in 2009, which remains today, to insure that pipeline projects which violate Wet’suwet’en Law would not trespass onto Wet’suwet’en territories to develop projects without their consent. Yesterday the Federal government approved the Northern Gateway Pipeline, but the Uni’stot’en Camp still remains in the path of the proposed pipe as well as several others. The Northern Gateway is intended to expand the Athabasca Tar Sands facilitating the export of bitumen to international markets via supertankers off the West Coast. The Uni’stot’en Clan is part of the hereditary chief system which has governed Wet’suwet’en lands since time immemorial and is not subject to the Indian Act or other impositions of colonial occupation. “Harper is illegal, Canada is illegal. The Provincial and Federal governments are illegal because they don’t have jurisdiction in our peoples territory. We have never signed any treaties, this land is unceded.” states Freda Huson, Unist’ot’en Clan member and spokesperson for the camp. Huson references a Supreme Court ruling in the Delgamuukw vs. British Columbia case that clearly states the ownership of unceded territories remains with the Indigenous peoples and that Band Council Chiefs and Indian Act Agents have no authority over these lands. In fact, consultation and consent must be given by the traditional and hereditary governance systems. Huson explains, “They’ve tried to get our consent and our Chiefs have said no to these projects and no means no. Wet’suwet’en law applies to these [projects]. Developers can go ahead and try and put their projects through here but they will be considered trespassers and we’ll enforce Wet’suwet’en law against trespassers… We’re not afraid of the Harper government, we’re not afraid of anyone who is going to try and forcefully put their project through our territory when we’ve already said no.” Indigenous peoples across Turtle Island have been standing up against resource extraction projects which infringe on our collective sovereignty and attack our territories, our peoples and our nations. Continued pushes for pipeline project approvals, tar sands expansion and fracking by the Federal government will only result in increased mobilization by Indigenous peoples. “Our numbers are quite high across Canada, Indigenous people probably out-number settler people and you can guarantee that if there is an uprising in one community – especially with a bigger project that impacts the whole world through global warming – you’re going to have a lot of upset people across Canada, this impacts every body.” Temporary highway, rail and port blockades have been used to show support with other Indigenous communities across Turtle Island and Huson asserts that any attack on the Unist’ot’en will result in widespread, global support. “We had people make vows that they will shut down major highways to impact the Canadian economy if the Harper government is going to ignore Indigenous people.” Dini Ze Toghestiy, a Hereditary Chief for the Likhs’amisyu Clan of the Wet’suwet’en Nation and member of the Unist’ot’en Camp asserts, “Supporters are repositioning themselves in surrounding towns to help build local support, and people in the cities are mobilized now. There’s individuals all over the world who have pledged to do what they can to help us.” Concerning the threat of a raid on the camp, there was no police presence on Unist’ot’en territory on June 15th – the date set for the anticipated raid. A tip from the BC Civil Liberties Association informed the Unist’ot’en Camp that there’s a rumour going around Victoria that the government, rather than file an injunction against the camp, file a charge for trespass using the Crown Lands Act. “But this is not Crown land” stated Toghestiy, “this land is unceded and we’re still here. We’re not going anywhere. People are showing up to the camp every day, our numbers are growing. This war is far from bring over and we’re going to win this one. We’re going to win it decisively.”

Media Contact: Freda Huson: 778-210-1100

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BREAKING: Rising Tide Vermont, Addison county residents, stage sit-in

Global Justice Ecology Project works closely with Rising Tide Vermont and stands in solidarity with pipeline resistance. -The GJEP  Team

June 9, 2014. Source: Rising Tide Vermont

Photo by Rising Tide Vermont

Photo by Rising Tide Vermont

Montpelier – Landowners and climate activists opposed to the Vermont Fracked Gas pipeline staged a sit-in today at the Department of Public Service, calling on the agency and the Public Service Board to suspend pipeline construction until they address possible widespread hazardous soil and water contamination along the proposed pipeline route.

“We’re here to let the Department and the Board know that without adequate intervention, pipeline construction threatens to disturb soils contaminated with hazardous chemicals,” said Jonathan Shapiro, of Rising Tide Vermont.

The demonstrators, including several Monkton landowners who live along the proposed pipeline route, are concerned that pipeline construction along the VELCO corridor could expose more people and water to contaminated soils. Continue reading

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BREAKING: Climate justice activists blockade Vermont Gas headquarters, drop banner from roof

Note: Global Justice Ecology Project works closely with Rising Tide Vermont opposing fossil fuels and false solutions to climate change.

-The GJEP Team

May 27, 2014. Source: Rising Tide Vermont

Sara Mehalick, an organizer with Rising Tide Vermont, locked her neck to the front doors of Vermont Gas' headquarters. Photo: Darya,  Rising Tide Vermont

Sara Mehalick, an organizer with Rising Tide Vermont, locked her neck to the front doors of Vermont Gas’ headquarters. Photo: Darya, Rising Tide Vermont

Climate justice activists have blockaded the main entrance to Vermont Gas’s headquarters and dropped a massive banner from the roof, demanding the company immediately cancel its plans to build the fracked gas pipeline.  A support rally is underway across the street from the headquarters.

VGS_BannerSara Mehalick, a resident of Plainfield, Vermont, has locked her neck to the main entrance of the building, effectively blockading the doors shut.  She released a statement about why she undertook today’s action:

Today I’m taking action because Vermont Gas is intent upon shackling our communities to fossil fuels, and condemning us to irreversible climate change.  We have a responsibility to the communities whose land, water, and air are being poisoned by fracking, and we’re determined to make sure that this fracked gas pipeline does not move forward.  Today we’re here to tell Vermont Gas to cancel their construction plans, or expect to see growing resistance.

Jonathan Shapiro, with Rising Tide Vermont, said “Climate change is already driving heat waves, torrential rains, and flooding in the Northeast, which is only predicted to worsen in the coming years. [1]  In this context of mounting climate crisis, building new fossil fuel infrastructure is an exercise in complete lunacy and must be stopped.”

VGS_Rally

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BREAKING: Marcos to step down as leader of Zapatista army, says he no longer exists

Note: While the main stream coverage below (all we could find in English) insufficiently explains this momentous announcement, this article in Spanish explains that Marcos’ stepping down is related to the recent assassination of Galeano, a Zapatista teacher and the desire for a new generation of Zapatista leaders to take hold.

From Marcos’ final communique:

“Pensamos que es necesario que uno de nosotros muera para que Galeano Viva. Así que hemos decidido que Marcos debe de morir hoy”

We think it is necessary that one of us dies so Galeano may live.  So we decided that Marcos should die today

¡Galeano presente!

-The GJEP Team

By Michael O’Boyle and Tomas Sarmiento, May 26, 2014. Source: Reuters

The leader of the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN), Subcomandante Marcos (C) smokes a pipe during opening of the forum to mark the fifteenth anniversary of the Zapatista uprising in San Critobal de las Casas in Mexico's state of Chiapas, January 2, 2009. Photo: REUTERS/JORGE DAN LOPEZ

The leader of the Zapatista National Liberation Army (EZLN), Subcomandante Marcos (C) smokes a pipe during opening of the forum to mark the fifteenth anniversary of the Zapatista uprising in San Critobal de las Casas in Mexico’s state of Chiapas, January 2, 2009.
Photo: REUTERS/JORGE DAN LOPEZ

Subcommandante Marcos, who led an indigenous uprising in southern Mexico and became one of Latin America’s most iconic revolutionaries, on Sunday said he was stepping down as spokesman for the Zapatista rebels and would disappear.

The ski-masked, pipe-smoking guerrilla leader became an idol of the anti-globalization movement after he led the 1994 Zapatista rebellion in the southern state of Chiapas, but he had avoided public appearances in recent years.

“We have decided that today Marcos no longer exists,” he wrote in a lengthy statement published on the Zapatista website that he said was his last message as the rebel leader.

Marcos denied rumors he had become ill, saying he was making way for a new generation to take over speaking for the rebels, who still hold a handful of communities deep in Chiapas.

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BREAKING: Industry hype and misdirected science undercuts real energy and climate solutions

Note: In response to a recent media frenzy about poplars genetically engineered to create biofuels and “greener” paper, Global Justice Ecology Project, Biofuelwatch, Center for Food Safety and Canadian Biotechnology Action Network issued the following statement today.

To sign GJEP’s petition calling for a global ban on GE trees, click here.

-The GJEP Team

April 9, 2014. 

poplar

Scientists and environmentalists today condemned a recent press release by researchers at the University of British Columbia announcing they have created genetically engineered (GE) poplar trees for paper and biofuel production, opening the prospect of growing these GE trees like an agricultural crop in the future.

The poplars were genetically engineered for altered lignin composition to supposedly make them easier to process into paper and biofuels. Groups, however, warn that manipulation of lignin, and the potential contamination of wild poplars with that trait, could be extremely dangerous.

Lignin is a key structural component of plant cell walls and a major component of soils.  It is also the product of millions of years of natural selection favoring sturdy, healthy and resilient plants. GE poplars with altered lignin could have devastating effects on forests, ecosystems, human communities and biodiversity.

Poplars include at least 30 species, are widespread throughout the Northern Hemisphere and have a high potential for genetic dispersal.

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Breaking: Earth First! disrupts Florida Power and Light in protest over proposed power plant near Seminole reservation

February 24, 2014. Source: Earth First! Newswire

lockdown

Photo: Earth First! Newswire

Juno, FL – Activists with Earth First! groups from across the country converged at the Florida Power and Light (FPL) Headquarters this morning. Five protestors have chained their arms together at the entrance, disrupting business operations at the second largest energy company in the nation. Their primary concern is a proposal to construct a fossil fuel power plant in Hendry County, on the border of the Big Cypress Seminole Reservation.

“Stop FPL and others who destroy the environment and resources, for the sake of our future generations,” says Sam Tommie, a Seminole tribal member who opposes the project.

“This proposal is an act of environmental racism against indigenous people and an attack on the Everglades. If we stand by and do nothing, we are also complicit in this injustice,” says Christian Minaya of Everglades Earth First!, a group based in Palm Beach County.

The signs and banners of Earth First! demonstrators include messages regarding threats to panther habitat, water quality and the practice of gas fracking—a controversial extraction technique that will likely be a source of fuel for the facility. Last year FPL also announced that it would be partnering with Spectra, a major transporter of fracked gas, to build a new pipeline across Northern Florida. Continue reading

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Breaking: Pete Seeger, Songwriter and Champion of Folk Music, Dies at 94

Note: Orin Langelle and Anne Petermann of Global Justice Ecology Project had the privilege to see one of Pete Seeger’s last concerts in Buffalo, NY on November 9th.  Orin took photos of the event which he posted on his website.  You can view them here.  Pete Seeger was a powerful voice for change and part of the incredible uprising of the 1950s-1970s that helped end a war and stop some of the worst racist abuses in this country.  ¡Pete Seeger Presente!

–The GJEP Team

By JON PARELESJAN. 28, 2014, Source: New York Times

Pete Seeger performs in Buffalo, NY in November 2014.  PhotoLangelle.org

Pete Seeger performs in Buffalo, NY in November 2014. PhotoLangelle.org

Pete Seeger, the singer, folk-song collector and songwriter who spearheaded an American folk revival and spent a long career championing folk music as both a vital heritage and a catalyst for social change, died Monday. He was 94 and lived in Beacon, N.Y.

His death was confirmed by his grandson, Kitama Cahill Jackson, who said he died of natural causes at NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital.

Mr. Seeger’s career carried him from singing at labor rallies to the Top 10 to college auditoriums to folk festivals, and from a conviction for contempt of Congress (after defying the House Un-American Activities Committee in the 1950s) to performing on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial at an inaugural concert for Barack Obama.

For Mr. Seeger, folk music and a sense of community were inseparable, and where he saw a community, he saw the possibility of political action.

In his hearty tenor, Mr. Seeger, a beanpole of a man who most often played 12-string guitar or five-string banjo, sang topical songs and children’s songs, humorous tunes and earnest anthems, always encouraging listeners to join in. His agenda paralleled the concerns of the American left: He sang for the labor movement in the 1940s and 1950s, for civil rights marches and anti-Vietnam War rallies in the 1960s, and for environmental and antiwar causes in the 1970s and beyond. “We Shall Overcome,” which Mr. Seeger adapted from old spirituals, became a civil rights anthem.

Mr. Seeger was a prime mover in the folk revival that transformed popular music in the 1950s. As a member of the Weavers, he sang hits including Lead Belly’s “Goodnight, Irene” — which reached No. 1 — and “If I Had a Hammer,” which he wrote with the group’s Lee Hays. Another of Mr. Seeger’s songs, “Where Have All the Flowers Gone?,” became an antiwar standard. And in 1965, the Byrds had a No. 1 hit with a folk-rock version of “Turn! Turn! Turn!,” Mr. Seeger’s setting of a passage from the Book of Ecclesiastes.

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Missoula woman arrested for blocking megaload oil field equipment

By Kathryn Haake, January 22, 2014. Source: The Missoulian

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The 350-foot-long megaload that rolled through Missoula on Wednesday morning on its way to the Alberta tar sands is now parked at the old mill site property in Bonner, where the load is being reconfigured for Canadian highways. MICHAEL GALLACHER/Missoulian

A 71-year-old Missoula woman was arrested and charged with disorderly conduct for peacefully protesting on Reserve Street as a megaload of oil field equipment passed by early Wednesday.

Carol Marsh was charged with the misdemeanor when she sat down in the middle of Reserve Street near the Kent Avenue intersection and refused to move.

Missoula Police Detective Sgt. Travis Welsh said protesters along Reserve Street were generally peaceful and obeying laws as Omega-Morgan moved the behemoth equipment through town.

But as the megaload neared Kent Street at about 12:40 a.m., Montana Highway Patrol officers accompanying the rig called city police and said a protester was sitting in the street, in front of the trucks.

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