Daryl Hannah and East Texas Great-Grandmother Arrested Protesting Keystone XL Pipeline
How can you be arrested for “trespassing” on your own land? Well, anything can happen when a multi-national corporation comes in and expropriates your farm for their profit.
That’s why actress and activist Daryl Hannah has joined forces with East Texas ranch owner Eleanor Fairchild, 78, to stage a protest against Keystone XL construction on Fairchild’s farm. The actress is intent on defending Fairchild’s home and business, Fairchild Farms, a portion of which has been expropriated by TransCanada, for its toxic tar sands pipeline. The duo claims their action is inspired by the our ongoing tree blockade happening on a neighboring property.
On Thursday afternoon, Hannah marched across Fairchild’s property with the ranch owner to block construction crews who have cleared large swaths of land along the controversial tar sands pipeline’s route. Keystone XL will permanently bisect Fairchild’s 300 acre ranch, which includes undeveloped wetland areas and natural springs producing more than 400 gallons of fresh water per minute from her property. Hannah, whose outspoken anti-Keystone position dates back many years, expressed pride to be able to stand with Fairchild who is watching her home and its delicate ecosystems destroyed in front of her eyes.
“I am standing in solidarity with the farmers, ranchers and landowners who have been bullied, coerced and threatened by TransCanada. Texans do not want this toxic export pipeline coming through and compromising their land and water,” she shared. “Texas has already experienced a tragic and epic drought. We cannot afford to compromise our water supply for a multinational corporation’s profits.”
Fairchild, a great-grandmother, has been staunchly opposed to TransCanada’s Keystone XL tar sands pipeline project since she was first informed of it several years ago. She never signed a contract with the Canadian pipeline company, who, in turn, proceeded to expropriate her ranch through Texas’ lax eminent domain legal proceedings.
Originally unwilling to take action, she found herself inspired yet again due to the bravery exhibited on a neighboring property by the tree blockade. Fairchild explains, “We’re all neighbors here and everyone knows everyone’s business, really, so I knew the group was up to something at the tree blockade, but hearing about the young girl, Maggie, on the 40-foot tall pole all alone the other day, I knew I had to do something myself. I can’t climb a pole like her, but if I can raise hell by sitting down, I’m going to! What this foreign corporation’s doing just isn’t right.”
“I couldn’t be prouder to take a stand with my new inspiration, Eleanor,” Hannah said. “We’re rising up to defend homes here and now, because if a multinational corporation like TransCanada can come in and steal private property from Texans, then they’ll do it to anyone.”
TransCanada is currently embroiled in several lawsuits from landowners challenging the legality of their use of eminent domain to take land for the tar sands pipeline project. Property owners who initially signed contracts but who have since come to unequivocally oppose the fraudulent nature of the dangerous project have been silenced through ruthless legal threats. Fairchild, however, is undeterred.
“Tar sands is the dirtiest fuel on the planet, and I want the world to know that Texans do not want this pipeline forced through their homes,” she continued. “From the White House to my house, I don’t want this pipe threatening anyone’s house anywhere in the world!”
Come learn how to take a stand against Keystone XL with East Texas landowners at our Direct Action Training Camp, Oct. 12-14 and a public action on the Monday the 15.
Visit EcoWatch’s KEYSTONE XL page for more related news on this topic.
The photo below is just the beginning of the destruction on Eleanor’s land. See more photos in our flickr set.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Elizabeth Claire Alberts
There are trillions of microplastics in the ocean — they bob on the surface, float through the water column, and accumulate in clusters on the seafloor. With plastic being so ubiquitous, it's inevitable that marine organisms, such as sharks, will ingest them.
Polyproylene fibers found in one of the sampled sharks. Kristian Parton
Spiny dogfish. NOAA / Wikimedia Commons<p>"There appear to be two routes for these particles to end up in the sharks," Parton said. "The first through their food source [such as] crustaceans. Their prey may already contain these fibers, and consequently it's passed to the shark through bioaccumulation up the food chain. The second pathway is direct ingestion from the sediment. As these sharks feed, they'll often suck up sediment into their mouths, some of this is expelled straight away, although some is swallowed, therefore fibers and particles that may have sunk down into the seabed may be directly ingested from the surrounding sediment as these sharks feed."</p><p>Some sharks only contained a few plastic particles, but others contained dozens. The larger the shark, the more plastic was in it, the findings suggested. The highest number of microplastics was found in an individual bull huss, which had 154 polypropylene fibers inside its stomach and intestines.</p><p>"It's perhaps likely this individual shark had swallowed a larger piece of fishing rope/netting and this has broken down during digestive processes within the shark, and also broken down into smaller pieces during our analysis," Parton said.</p>
Lesser-spotted dogfish caught as bycatch. Kristian Parton<p>While this study only examined the stomach and digestive tracts of demersal sharks, Parton says it's possible that plastic would be present in other parts of the sharks' bodies, such as the liver and muscle tissue. However, more research would be needed to prove this.</p><p>At the moment, there is also limited understanding of how microplastic ingestion would impact a shark's health, although microplastics are known to negatively influence feeding behavior, development, reproduction and life span of zooplankton and crustaceans.</p><p>"If we can show that these fibers contain inorganic pollutants attached to them, then that could have real consequences for these shark species at a cellular level, impacting various internal body systems," Parton said.</p>
Parton in the lab. Kristian Parton<p>This new study demonstrates how pervasive and destructive plastic pollution can be in the marine environment, according to Will McCallum, head of oceans for Greenpeace U.K.</p><p>"Our addiction to plastics combined with the lack of mechanisms to protect our oceans is suffocating marine life," McCallum said in a statement. "Sharks sit on top of the marine food web and play a vital role in ocean ecosystems. Yet, they are completely exposed to pollutants and other human impactful activities. We need to stop producing so much plastic and create a network of ocean sanctuaries to give wildlife space to recover. The ocean is not our dump, marine life deserves better than plastic."</p>
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By Loveday Wright and Stuart Braun
After a Japanese-owned oil tanker struck a reef off Mauritius on July 25, a prolonged period of inaction is threatening to become an ecological disaster.
<div id="bb0a7" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="e5aefc0fff61ab1aea2f4b03c5399864"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1291765757013983238" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">The #oilspill is devastating but I want to honour the community mobilisation at the Mahebourg waterfront today (to… https://t.co/UWFkZFdjdi</div> — Fabiola Monty (@Fabiola Monty)<a href="https://twitter.com/LFabiolaMonty/statuses/1291765757013983238">1596815930.0</a></blockquote></div><p>"Booms are made of nylon mesh filled with #sugarcane straws all hand-stitched by Mauritian volunteers, empty plastic bottles used as buoys," described Mauritian journalist Zeenat Hansrod in a tweet. </p>
How to Tackle Oil Spills<p>The method for tackling oil spills depends on several factors, including the type and amount of oil in question, location and weather conditions.</p><p>"Once the oil comes to shore, the more intensive the cleaning technique. You can risk causing further damage," said Nicky Cariglia, an independent consultant at Marittima, who specializes in marine pollution. </p><p>"If you wanted to remove all traces of oil, the techniques available become increasingly aggressive the less oil that remains. In mangroves, you would have the added risk of causing damage by trampling," Cariglia told DW. Highly sensitive mangrove ecosystems line the Mauritius east coast that is threatened by the current spill.</p><p>Because oil normally has a lower density than water, it floats on the surface of the ocean. This means that for clean-up action to be most effective, it should happen very quickly after a spill, before the oil disperses. </p>
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When Europeans first arrived in North America, Atlantic puffins were common on islands in the Gulf of Maine. But hunters killed many of the birds for food or for feathers to adorn ladies' hats. By the 1800s, the population in Maine had plummeted.
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