Tag Archives: Unis’tot’en action camp

Video: Elevating Indigenous voices of resistance and growing active dissent

October 9, 2013. Source: Reclaim Turtle Island

[Tiotiahke, so-called Montreal QC] Kahsatstenhsera:Indigenous Resistance to Tar Sands Pipelines is a short documentary film and antipipeline movement resource now available for free online at reclaimturtleisland.com. This short documentary hopes to act as an accessible and educational tool to shed light on Indigenous resistance to the expanding project of slow industrial genocide known as the tar sands. Kahsatstenhera hopes to build awareness within an Indigenous context of the struggles against the Enbridge Line 9 and TransCanada Energy East pipelines while touching on the role of fracking in tar sands expansion.

Pipeline expansion projects and resource extractive industries are part of the continued land theft and genocide of Indigenous peoples. It is for this reason that that environmental justice movements must take leadership from grassroots and traditional Indigenous governance that are on the front lines of colonial-capitalist violence. This tool will communicate the importance of action in the face of environmental devastation and ongoing colonization.
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“My generation has stood up and said, ‘No more’”

By Aaron Lakoff, 12 August 2013. Source: Vancouver Media Coop

Members of the Wet'suwet'en nation perform a welcoming song to open the 4th annual Unis'tot'en action camp. Photo: Aaron Lakoff

Members of the Wet’suwet’en nation perform a welcoming song to open the 4th annual Unis’tot’en action camp. Photo: Aaron Lakoff

From July 10th to 14th, roughly 200 Indigenous and non-Indigenous people gathered in unceded Wet’suwet’en territory in central British Columbia for the 4th Annual Unis’tot’en Action Camp. The Unis’tot’en clan of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation have maintained a blockade on the only bridge leading into their territory since July 2010 in an attempt to keep seven proposed oil and gas pipelines off their traditional lands. The pipelines would carry shale gas obtained through fracking, or bitumen oil from the Alberta tar sands, to the Pacific coast, where it would be exported on mega-tankers towards Asian markets.

The action camp brings supporters of the Unis’tot’en to the blockade site in order to learn about the struggle, to network, and to bring action ideas back to their own communities.

Toghestiy, Hereditary Chief of the Likhts’amisyu Clan of the Wet’suwet’en nation, said he was very happy with the high proportion of Indigenous participants at this year’s camp compared to previous years.

“I would say about 40% of the population of the action camp was Indigenous, and they were Indigenous from different parts of Turtle Island,” Toghestiy told the Vancouver Media Co-op (VMC). “So it was amazing to have all these grassroots Indigenous people come together in solidarity with one another. We created an alliance, and it was a pretty beautiful experience. It will help us fulfill our responsibility [to the land] into the future.”

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Day of action against Chevron and Pacific Trails Pipeline

March 8, 2013. Source: Rising Tide Vancouver Coast Salish Territories


American oil giant Chevron wants to build a destructive pipeline across unceded indigenous territory to carry fracked gas to the coast, and export climate change to the world. We say NO. We do not need fracked gas, we do not want another pipeline and we will not stand by as colonial governments and greedy corporations push us over the climate catastrophe cliff edge.

Chevron is the new corporate face of the Pacific Trail Pipeline project, having recently become 50/50 partners with Apache to build a fracking gas pipeline across 500 kilometres of largely unceded land, from Summit Lake to LNG plants planned for Kitimat. On March 30th we will greet them with resistance across BC and around the world. As politicians put economic growth and industry interests ahead of carbon common sense and indigenous rights, it is up to us to take direct action to raise the cost of pushing ahead with the project, and raise the stakes in the PR battle. We encourage autonomous creative direct action against Chevron and any others involved in the development and financing of Pacific Trail Pipeline. Occupy offices, drop banners, demonstrate in city centres, lock-on at the pumps, subvert the Chevron brand, hand out leaflets… the choice is yours!

Everywhere they operate, Chevron exploits land and people for money, often through the use of force, and without taking responsibility for the consequences. Battles against environmental racism and illegal oil wars, movements for indigenous sovereignty and migrant justice – we amplify our resistance by uniting our struggles, so we are calling for solidarity actions and events against Chevron across Canada and around the world.
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After 46 days, Gulf Coast activists end hunger strike, express solidarity with Theresa Spence

January 16, 2013.  Source: Earth First! Newswire

Gulf Coast activists Diane Wilson and Bob Lindsey pictured here with Tar Sands Blockaders in Houston, TX after 46 days on a hunger strike to protest Valero’s involvement with TransCanada and their presence in the fence-line community of Manchester.

Gulf Coast activists Diane Wilson and Bob Lindsey pictured here with Tar Sands Blockaders in Houston, TX after 46 days on a hunger strike to protest Valero’s involvement with TransCanada and their presence in the fence-line community of Manchester.

Our friends at the Tar Sands Blockade have been working with anarchist community organizers in Houston’s toxic East End. Many Latin@ communities are being disproportionately effected by industry, a blatant example of environmental racism and classism.  The small Latin@ neighborhood of Manchester is completely surrounded by industry and their only park sits in the shadow of a Valero refinery emitting known human carcinogens like benzene, ethylene, 1-3 butadiene, etc.  Through projects based on mutual aid and solidarity organizers aim to amplify the voices of people in the community.  They have faced endless police harassment and intimidation.

Gulf Coast activists Diane Wilson and Bob Lindsey engaged in a 46 day hunger strike to call attention to Valero’s involvement with TransCanada and their presence in the community of Manchester.  After ending their strike they made the following statement:

On November 29th, 2012 in protest of Valero’s involvement with the KXL pipeline we locked our necks to industrial trucks just outside the Valero refinery. We were arrested and immediately began a hunger strike in solidarity with the struggling people of the community of Manchester. We demanded that Valero not only cease all business with TransCanada but vacate the Manchester neighborhood that they have exploited for decades.

In Houston’s toxic East End, home to the largest petro-chemical complexes in North America, marginalized communities of color are forced to breathe poisoned air. The small Latin@ community of Manchester is the most polluted neighborhood in Texas and Valero is responsible for most of the pollution. Instead of working to reduce emissions, Valero plans to bring tar sands to Texas through the KXL, further denigrating the air, water, and environmental quality of local communities. Children here are exposed to 8 different cancer causing toxins at all times, homes are encapsulated by huge industrial storage tanks and the Valero refinery billows poison on top of the community’s only park. What is happening in Manchester is a living case of environmental racism and classism.

We stand in opposition to TransCanada and their Keystone XL Pipeline as well as all corporations and entities that profit from the direct suffering of others. After 46 days on hunger strike our bodies are weak and our health has rapidly declined. We knew that our demands were lofty and that we would not destroy our enemies with one fell swoop. By putting ourselves at risk of death we intended to expose that Valero, TransCanada and all other industries who promote the practice of profits over people do not care whether we live or die. The people of Manchester already know this. The people of East Texas already know this. The indigenous peoples of the Athabasca region already know this. We hope that you too now know this. Direct Action is the only way to stop Valero, TransCanada and all other corporations that commit unconscionable acts of greed.

Tar sands are being mined along the Athabasca River in Canada, in the heart of the boreal forest and one of the worlds most significant wetlands, just 70 miles away from North America’s largest freshwater river basin, a critical habitat for many species. Not only does this threaten delicate ecosystems but the homes and ancestral land, cultural heritage, and way of life of indigenous communities. The mining of carcinogenic bitumen is powered by gas obtained from hydraulic fracturing, a practice which can NOT be done safely and must be stopped at all costs. This is NOT a debate.  We recognize that elected officials have failed to protect people, animals, and the earth from tar sands exploitation, which is the most ecologically destructive project on the planet. These officials have been supportive of the extraction industry carrying out these egregious acts, and they are responsible for this system of exploitation.

We stand in solidarity with the Unist’ot’en Camp, the Idle No More movement and Chief Theresa Spence who is now on the 36th day of a hunger strike. They  have become catalysts for resistance to the destruction of the earth and struggle against the colonization of it’s inhabitants, a battle that indigenous communities have fought for over 500 years on this continent. We call out to all sentient beings to decolonize immediately.

We also send a special message of solidarity and appreciation to our dear personal friend, Start Loving. Start began hunger striking 11 days ago in support of us and in solidarity with Chief Theresa Spence.

Tar Sands Blockaders have been engaged in an ongoing series of aerial blockades in East Texas to physically stop the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline. TransCanada has terrorized the lives and homes of families all along the pipeline route with complete disregard for natural habitats and wildlife.  They have hired local police as armed thugs to torture blockaders and their allies and used their corporate dollars and fancy lawyers to intimidate and muscle ordinary folks, including farmers struggling to survive in a world of factory farming and genetically modified crops.

We are ending our hunger strike so that we may continue on in lifelong resistance and opposition to the most essential struggle we face as human beings, the struggle to protect what is left of our ravaged earth. Through systems of mutual aid and solidarity we will move forward to create an environment in which resistance can be cultivated and direct action becomes the natural and immediate reaction of all people in the face of exploitation and oppression. We stand in solidarity with the Tar Sands Blockade who have reminded us all that we must have immediacy in our actions and fight ceaselessly for the earth, it’s creatures and all of our fellow human beings. We will never surrender. In the strength of unity we will fight on.

In Solidarity,

Diane Wilson, lifelong Texan, grandmother, 4th generation shrimper and co-founder of Code Pink, The Texas Jail Project, Texas Injured Workers, and the Injured Workers National Network

Bob Lindsey, 5th generation Texan, US Navy Veteran and the San Antonio Bay Waterkeeper


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Surveyors evicted by B.C. First Nation

Note:  You can read more about the Wet’suwet’en struggle to stop the Pacific Trails Pipeline here.

-The GJEP Team

November 21, 2012.  Source: CBC

Photo: http://unistotencamp.wordpress.com/

Members of a First Nation in northern B.C. have evicted surveyors working on a natural gas pipeline project from their territory and set up a roadblock against all pipeline activity.

A group identifying itself as the Unis’tot’en clan of the Wet’suwet’en Nation said surveyors for Apache Canada’s Pacific Trails Pipeline were trespassing.

“The Unis’tot’en clan has been dead-set against all pipelines slated to cross through their territories, which include PTP [Pacific Trails Pipeline], Enbridge’s Northern Gateway and many others,” Freda Huson, a spokesperson for the group, said in a statement.

“As a result of the unsanctioned PTP work in the Unis’tot’en yintah, the road leading into the territory has been closed to all industry activities until further notice.”

Huson was not available for comment.
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The uncertainty of pipelines in unceded lands

By John Ahni Schertow, November 20 2012. Source: Intercontinental Cry

Photo: unistotencamp.wordpress.com

On the Beautiful Widzin Kwa (Morice River): The Grassroots Wet’suwet’en people are winning the physical and awareness campaigns to stop the onslaught of some proposed pipelines from entering their unceded and occupied lands. Exactly one year ago, the Grassroots Wet’suwet’en of the C’ilhts’ekhyu and Likhts’amisyu Clans confronted, and escorted out, employees and drillers of the Pacific Trails Pipeline (PTP) from one of the Wet’suwet’en territories which they call Tal Bits Kwa along the upper reaches of Morice River. Over the span of a year a lot has happened in that sacred area to ensure that the Wet’suwet’en Laws are adhered to and their lands are protected from further destruction.

In December of 2011, shortly after the PTP blockade the Gitxsan people, who are the Western neighbors to the Wet’suwet’en, boarded up the Gitxsan Treaty office Society because of a backroom deal that was signed with the much contested Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline company. The Grassroots Wet’suwet’en regularly visited and openly supported the grassroots Gitxsan who successfully blocked the entry to the office for an additional six months. Continue reading

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Action Alert: Support grassroots Wet’suwet’en resistance to Pacific Trails pipeline

September 25, 2012.  Source: Unis’tot’en Action Camp

Note: Here at GJEP, we feel that solidarity with communities on the front lines of extreme energy extraction, environmental destruction and other forms of domination is a crucial piece of building a movement for the world we want to see.  Please consider hosting a kitchen party (see below) or finding another way to support the many ongoing struggles to shut down the Tar Sands, gas extraction fields, and their associated pipelines.  Whether you can provide money, supplies or even put your body on the line, your support is needed to stop one-percent’s continued assault on frontline communities across the continent.

-The GJEP Team

“In the face of unbridled industrial and economic expansion the grassroots Wet’suwet’en are calling out to like-minded individuals who are interested in helping us stop the oil and gas corridor from coming through our unceded and unsurrendered lands. I feel that everybody has the responsibility to protect what is left from the tyrants of greed and corruption.” Toghestiy, hereditary chief, Likht’samisyu Clan

For the past three years, grassroots Wet’suwet’en from the Unis’tot’en clan (along with members of the Gitimt’en and Likhts’amisyu clans) have held an annual action camp to raise awareness about and promote resistance to proposed pipeline developments through their unceded lands. Now as construction of the Pacific Trails pipeline attempts to move forward, the camp is rapidly transitioning into a full-time community. Vital support is needed in terms of food, materials, and people to sustain the camp through winter.
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