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Will You 'Promise to Protect'? Coalition Urges New Wave of Resistance to Stop KXL
By Jake Johnson
Shortly following the Nebraska Public Service Commission's "shortsighted and dangerous" vote to green-light TransCanada's Keystone XL (KXL) pipeline, a coalition comprised of Indigenous peoples, farmers and ranchers living along the oil project's proposed route published a letter on Monday urging the public to join them in protecting sacred land from corporate exploitation.
Endorsed by Native tribes, green groups and high-profile environmentalists, the "Promise to Protect" call to action argues that making "a concerted stand" against TransCanada's $8 billion dirty energy project "will make other fossil fuel companies think that much harder about their own expansion plans."
"Together we've stopped them for many years, and we are going to keep stopping them," the letter reads. "But we need everyone's help. We need you to take a stand no matter what land you live or work on. The struggle to save Mother Earth begins with you."
"For many years the tribes, indigenous leaders, farmers, ranchers and allies everywhere have kept this pipeline at bay," the coalition notes. "That has been a great achievement. We honestly don't know if we can hold the line against Keystone XL forever—but we know that we have a chance."
The letter goes on to make several requests of those who wish to participate in the "creative resistance" against KXL that is expected to take shape in the coming months, including:
- Commitment to entirely peaceful acts of protest, even in the face of "the pain caused by TransCanada's aggression";
- Respect for "the leadership of Indigenous peoples, farmers and ranchers in the action and the plans and strategies of the front lines and their allies who have made promises to protect the land, water and climate";
- Preparation in advance of the demonstrations, including training sessions with organizers, so that "you're able to find the place you're most needed on any given day."
The fossil fuel industry "believes that with the inauguration of Mr. Trump, the obstacles in their path had disappeared," the letter concludes. "They are unaware of the rising tide of indigenous unity and the strong alliances with ranchers, farmers and the climate justice movement which grew stronger at Standing Rock. When the president approved the federal permits for KXL last winter, he asked TransCanada executives when construction would start: Our job is to make sure the answer is, 'no time soon.'"
As Common Dreams reported, Nebraska's Public Service Commission voted 3-2 on Monday to grant TransCanada the final permit to begin construction along an alternative route to the one the company initially proposed. If built, the pipeline would carry an estimated 800,000 gallons of tar sands oil per day from Alberta, Canada through several states en route to Texas oil refineries.
In addition to the mass action that is expected to accompany any advances in construction of the pipeline, a flood of appeals and lawsuits are expected to challenge Nebraska's decision to approve the project in the coming weeks.
"The climate can't handle another tar sands pipeline," Annie Leonard, executive director of Greenpeace USA, declared in a statement. "We won't stand idly by while new fossil fuel infrastructure projects, like the Keystone XL pipeline, threaten communities and put drinking water at risk. TransCanada and the other companies trying to build new tar sands pipelines will continue to face a wall of resistance until each and every one of these projects is cancelled."
Reposted with permission from our media associate Common Dreams.
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‘Companies Should Not Be Allowed to Use Hazardous Ingredients in Products People Use’: Michelle Pfeiffer Speaks Up for Safer Cosmetics
The beauty products we put on our skin can have important consequences for our health. Just this March, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned that some Claire's cosmetics had tested positive for asbestos. But the FDA could only issue a warning, not a recall, because current law does not empower the agency to do so.
Michelle Pfeiffer wants to change that.
The actress and Environmental Working Group (EWG) board member was spotted on Capitol Hill Thursday lobbying lawmakers on behalf of a bill that would increase oversight of the cosmetics industry, The Washington Post reported.
By Julia Conley
Scientists at the United Nations' intergovernmental body focusing on biodiversity sounded alarms earlier this month with its report on the looming potential extinction of one million species — but few heard their calls, according to a German newspaper report.
The climate crisis is a major concern for American voters with nearly 40 percent reporting the issue will help determine how they cast their ballots in the upcoming 2020 presidential election, according to a report compiled by the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication.
Of more than 1,000 registered voters surveyed on global warming, climate and energy policies, as well as personal and collective action, 38 percent said that a candidate's position on climate change is "very important" when it comes to determining who will win their vote. Overall, democratic candidates are under more pressure to provide green solutions as part of their campaign promises with 64 percent of Democrat voters saying they prioritize the issue compared with just 34 percent of Independents and 12 percent of Republicans.
President Donald Trump has agreed to sign a $19.1 billion disaster relief bill that will help Americans still recovering from the flooding, hurricanes and wildfires that have devastated parts of the country in the past two years. Senate Republicans said they struck a deal with the president to approve the measure, despite the fact that it did not include the funding he wanted for the U.S.-Mexican border, CNN reported.
"The U.S. Senate has just approved a 19 Billion Dollar Disaster Relief Bill, with my total approval. Great!" the president tweeted Thursday.