City Council to Governor: Bring Home Our State Troopers
Cincinnati City Council members have sent a strongly-worded letter to Ohio Gov. John Kasich demanding the recall of 37 state troopers from the escalating Dakota Access Pipeline protests in North Dakota.
Majority of Cincinnati City Council calling on @JohnKasich to recall the Ohio Troopers sent to North Dakota. https://t.co/lrSj7U6qKy— Chris Seelbach (@Chris Seelbach)1478023132.0
"The images of militarized police facing off against unarmed Native Americans protecting their water and their history recalls back to the worst time period of American history; a time when the Federal government committed genocide against native tribes in an attempt to gain control over their land and their resources," the letter states.
The letter was signed by a majority of city council members including Vice Mayor David Mann, President Pro-Tem Yvette Simpson as well as councilmembers Chris Seelbach, P.G. Sittenfeld and Wendell Young—was sent to Gov. Kasich on Tuesday.
"As you know, this pipeline was originally routed near Bismarck, ND, but changed after residents of Bismarck opposed the pipeline coming near their homes," the letter continues. "Instead, the pipeline was routed from mostly white Bismarck, to native lands bordering a reservation. This is a sensitive and delicate situation that Ohio voters have not taken a position on."
Yes, we were peppersprayed/maced/shot at here at #StandingRock. @EcoWatch shares latest, including my story. #NoDAPL https://t.co/ncG5Um5ADc— Erin Schrode (@Erin Schrode)1478190069.0
The 37 Ohio State Highway Patrol troopers were sent to the Standing Rock protests on Saturday. The letter urges state troopers to come home so they can focus on Ohio issues, such as the heroin epidemic, increased traffic fatalities and other issues that "need greater attention within our state."
Ohio State Highway Patrol spokesman Lt. Robert Sellers said that Ohio simply answered a call for support from North Dakota law enforcement.
"We are going there to support the people of North Dakota," Sellers told Cincinnati.com. "More specifically, to provide safety and protect everyone's rights."
Besides Ohio, many other states have deployed reinforcements to North Dakota after Gov. Jack Dalrymple declared a state of emergency surrounding the ongoing protests. Wisconsin, Indiana, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wyoming and Nebraska have all sent personnel, according to an Oct. 23 release from the Morton County Sheriff's Department.
UNPRECEDENTED! Gov Uses Emergency Order to Bring Out-of-State Police to #DakotaAccessPipeline Protest https://t.co/MtQqeC0XdQ @MarkRuffalo— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1477427351.0
The protests against the construction of the Dakota Access Pipeline near the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation started in April and has since entered the national conversation. More than 1.6 million Facebook users have "checked in" at the Standing Rock Indian Reservation page on Facebook to show solidarity with those on the front lines.
1 Million People 'Check In' on Facebook to Support Dakota Access Pipeline Protesters https://t.co/XQVRD5kYW8 @dhlovelife @Indigeneity— EcoWatch (@EcoWatch)1478037313.0
Native American communities and their supporters have been battling the construction of the controversial $3.7 billion, 1,168-mile pipeline that will transfer up to 570,00 barrels of crude oil per day from the Bakken oilfield in North Dakota to a refinery near Chicago, crossing the Missouri River less than a mile away from the Standing Rock Reservation.
The people of Standing Rock, often called Sioux, warn that a potential spill into the river would threaten their drinking water, desecrate sacred sites and risk the health of their reservation.
What started off as a peaceful protest has, at times, turned violent. Many
reports have emerged of police cracking down on the protestors, from the releasing of dogs to firing mace. Hundreds of arrests have been made.
Josh Fox, the founder and producing artistic director of the International WOW Company, recorded footage of the protests and wrote, "there were many eyewitnesses to these events, including myself and Erin Schrode, a 25-year old journalist who recently became the youngest person to run for Congress in California. Erin was shot yesterday by police at point-blank range with rubber bullets."
This morning, roughly 100 protesters will gather at the Ohio Statehouse in Columbus to deliver a petition to Gov. Kasich, demanding that he recall state troopers from the protest site.
The Change.org petition has collected more than 30,000 signatures and is one of the fastest-growing environmental campaigns on the site since it was first posted a week ago, a Change.org representative told EcoWatch.
"Ohio taxpayers do not want 37 of their highway patrol officers to participate in this unconstitutional and unethical violation of Native American people's rights."Change.org
"Ohio taxpayers do not want 37 of their highway patrol officers to participate in this unconstitutional and unethical violation of Native American people's rights. We demand that Gov. John Kasich bring these state troopers back home now," Grove City, Ohio resident Cathy Becker, who started the petition, said.
Becker and other organizers involved in Ohio's movement against the Dakota Access Pipeline will be speaking at today's gathering. You can watch the event on Facebook Live.
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A Game of Jenga<p>Think of it as a game of Jenga and the planet's climate system as the tower. For generations, we have been slowly removing blocks. But at some point, we will remove a pivotal block, such as the collapse of one of the major global ocean circulation systems, for example the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC), that will cause all or part of the global climate system to fall into a planetary emergency.</p><p>But worse still, it could cause runaway damage: Where the tipping points form a domino-like cascade, where breaching one triggers breaches of others, creating an unstoppable shift to a radically and swiftly changing climate.</p><p>One of the most concerning tipping points is mass methane release. Methane can be found in deep freeze storage within permafrost and at the bottom of the deepest oceans in the form of methane hydrates. But rising sea and air temperatures are beginning to thaw these stores of methane.</p><p>This would release a powerful greenhouse gas into the atmosphere, 30-times more potent than carbon dioxide as a global warming agent. This would drastically increase temperatures and rush us towards the breach of other tipping points.</p><p>This could include the acceleration of ice thaw on all three of the globe's large, land-based ice sheets – Greenland, West Antarctica and the Wilkes Basin in East Antarctica. The potential collapse of the West Antarctic ice sheet is seen as a key tipping point, as its loss could eventually <a href="https://science.sciencemag.org/content/324/5929/901" target="_blank">raise global sea levels by 3.3 meters</a> with important regional variations.</p><p>More than that, we would be on the irreversible path to full land-ice melt, causing sea levels to rise by up to 30 meters, roughly at the rate of two meters per century, or maybe faster. Just look at the raised beaches around the world, at the last high stand of global sea level, at the end of the Pleistocene period around 120,0000 years ago, to see the evidence of such a warm world, which was just 2°C warmer than the present day.</p>
Cutting Off Circulation<p>As well as devastating low-lying and coastal areas around the world, melting polar ice could set off another tipping point: a disablement to the AMOC.</p><p>This circulation system drives a northward flow of warm, salty water on the upper layers of the ocean from the tropics to the northeast Atlantic region, and a southward flow of cold water deep in the ocean.</p><p>The ocean conveyor belt has a major effect on the climate, seasonal cycles and temperature in western and northern Europe. It means the region is warmer than other areas of similar latitude.</p><p>But melting ice from the Greenland ice sheet could threaten the AMOC system. It would dilute the salty sea water in the north Atlantic, making the water lighter and less able or unable to sink. This would slow the engine that drives this ocean circulation.</p><p><a href="https://www.carbonbrief.org/atlantic-conveyor-belt-has-slowed-15-per-cent-since-mid-twentieth-century" target="_blank">Recent research</a> suggests the AMOC has already weakened by around 15% since the middle of the 20th century. If this continues, it could have a major impact on the climate of the northern hemisphere, but particularly Europe. It may even lead to the <a href="https://ore.exeter.ac.uk/repository/handle/10871/39731?show=full" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">cessation of arable farming</a> in the UK, for instance.</p><p>It may also reduce rainfall over the Amazon basin, impact the monsoon systems in Asia and, by bringing warm waters into the Southern Ocean, further destabilize ice in Antarctica and accelerate global sea level rise.</p>
The Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation has a major effect on the climate. Praetorius (2018)
Is it Time to Declare a Climate Emergency?<p>At what stage, and at what rise in global temperatures, will these tipping points be reached? No one is entirely sure. It may take centuries, millennia or it could be imminent.</p><p>But as COVID-19 taught us, we need to prepare for the expected. We were aware of the risk of a pandemic. We also knew that we were not sufficiently prepared. But we didn't act in a meaningful manner. Thankfully, we have been able to fast-track the production of vaccines to combat COVID-19. But there is no vaccine for climate change once we have passed these tipping points.</p><p><a href="https://www.weforum.org/reports/the-global-risks-report-2021" target="_blank">We need to act now on our climate</a>. Act like these tipping points are imminent. And stop thinking of climate change as a slow-moving, long-term threat that enables us to kick the problem down the road and let future generations deal with it. We must take immediate action to reduce global warming and fulfill our commitments to the <a href="https://www.ipcc.ch/sr15/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Paris Agreement</a>, and build resilience with these tipping points in mind.</p><p>We need to plan now to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, but we also need to plan for the impacts, such as the ability to feed everyone on the planet, develop plans to manage flood risk, as well as manage the social and geopolitical impacts of human migrations that will be a consequence of fight or flight decisions.</p><p>Breaching these tipping points would be cataclysmic and potentially far more devastating than COVID-19. Some may not enjoy hearing these messages, or consider them to be in the realm of science fiction. But if it injects a sense of urgency to make us respond to climate change like we have done to the pandemic, then we must talk more about what has happened before and will happen again.</p><p>Otherwise we will continue playing Jenga with our planet. And ultimately, there will only be one loser – us.</p>
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