Archive | October, 2012

Penan Blockade Remains Strong Against Murum Dam

29 Oct

Cross Posted from Free Malaysia Today

A local NGO has slammed Assistant Minister of Culture and Heritage Liwan Lagang for lying to Senior Minister-cum-Land Development Minister James Masing on the situation with the Penans who were protesting the Murum Dam construction.

Liwan had apparently told Masing that the protesting Penans have agreed to dismantle the blockades mounted since last month on the access road into the dam’s construction site.

Chastising Lagang, Sarawak Conservation Alliance for Natural Environment (SCANE) national coordinator Raymond Abin said that the Penans in Murum have not dismantled the blockades.

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Tasmania: Ongoing Forestry Protests Marked by Fatigue

29 Oct

Cross Posted from ABC

Only 10 people turned out for the first protest since peace talks fell over last week.

The Huon Valley Environment Centre targetted timber veneer processor Ta Ann in Hobart this morning claiming it misleads its Japanese customers about timber sources.

The centre’s Jenny Webber says old growth ecosystems have been lost to provide the company with timber.

She says with a logging moratorium on 430,000 hectares due to be lifted on Wednesday, protesters will rally even though they are tired.

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Chinese Protests Over Chemical Factory Reflect Government Mistrust

29 Oct


Cross Posted from Seattle Times

By GILLIAN WONG

After three days of protests by thousands of citizens over pollution fears, a local Chinese government relented and agreed that a petrochemical factory would not be expanded, only to see the protests persist.

The standoff in the prosperous city of Ningbo has highlighted the deep mistrust between people and the government in China. Should they last longer, the demonstrations would upset an atmosphere of calm that Chinese leaders want for a transfer of power in the Communist Party leadership next month.

The protest, which started sporadically last week, swelled over the weekend and led to clashes between citizens and police. The Ningbo city government announced Sunday evening that they and the project’s investor – the state-owned petrochemical behemoth Sinopec – had “resolutely” agreed not to go ahead with the expansion.

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Radicals push past old-school activism to oppose shale drilling

28 Oct
Cross Posted from E&E News

By Ellen M. Gilmer

Cusi Ballew is willing to die to stop drilling.

He’s climbing a dozen feet above the soggy ground this September afternoon for practice. When the time comes, he’ll climb even higher and dare authorities to cut the ropes. A couple of slits could send him plunging 60 feet down.

That’s what it takes, he says, to draw attention to rampant natural gas development in the area.

In July, dozens of demonstrators put the tactic to work. They blocked an access road with debris and crisscrossed ropes connected to two tree sitters 60 feet up in central Pennsylvania’s Moshannon State Forest. Beyond them towered a 70-foot natural gas drilling rig, which could be accessed only by toppling the blockade and slashing the climbers’ safety lines. The resulting nonviolent standoff forced rig operator EQT Corp. to shut down for hours.

Much to the frustration of companies like EQT, these activists are growing in force, and they have made shale drilling — especially the practice of hydraulic fracturing — a top target. Across Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio and outward, radical drilling critics have mobilized, united in their skepticism of an industry that has swept across the gas-rich Marcellus and Utica formations and dotted the landscape with new rigs and well pads.

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New wave of pipeline activism flirts with the law

26 Oct

 

Cross Posted from Metro News

It was billed as one of the biggest acts of civil disobedience in Canadian history.

As thousands of peaceful protesters took to the Legislature lawn in Victoria Monday to voice their opposition to Enbridge’s proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline and the oil tanker traffic that would result from it, hundreds more were ready to cross a legal line.

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PA turns lights out to protest proposed power lines

26 Oct

Homes in Clifton, Big Bass Lake, Thornhurst and surrounding areas will turn their lights off this evening to show their opposition to proposed power lines being built on their properties.

Part of a weekend of protesting PPL’s plans to build 57 miles of power lines through parts of Luzerne, Lackawanna and Wayne counties, groups of citizens will begin this evening holding “power down Fridays.”

Frances Page, a Thornhurst Township resident and an organizer of the grass-roots effort to change the route of the proposed power line, encourages people in affected areas to cut back on electricity from 6 to 10 p.m.

“We know we’re not shutting down the grid or lowering anybody’s bills,” Page said. “But the message will be heard.”

Their message: Residents don’t want invasive, 145-feet-tall steel poles and power lines on their property, disrupting the surrounding natural environment.

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Updates from Michigan Fracking Protest

25 Oct

One of the balloon banners in the Lansing Center 10/24

Prosecutor caves to pressure and drops the felony charges. Everyone is now out without bail! [Read original story about their action here]

 15 people left the Mineral Rights Auction protest at the Lansing Center yesterday and headed to the office of Stuart Dunnings, the Ingham County prosecutor. Although he refused to process our friends yesterday because they were being held on felony charges, at today’s arraignment no felony was brought up. All are being charged with a misdemeanor- Disrupting a Public Meeting. National Lawyers Guild lawyers have stepped up to represent everyone arrested. Court fees and other legal costs are still needed, so if you haven’t had a chance, please donate.

The felony that 5 people were threatened with is a frequently used Michigan statute called “Resisting and Obstructing” (R&O).  While we are all happy that our friends are out and not being charged with this 2 year felony, it’s important to remember how many others are still locked up with this charge.  The law defines obstructing as “knowing failure to comply with a lawful command.”  So, even if a person is stopped for nothing (other than racial profiling for instance), and does anything the cop doesn’t like or is the least bit different from what the cop says, they can be charged with this felony.  In one Michigan county up to 25% of people in the local jail are there for R&O and no other charge.  For us in Michigan we feel that we have to make prison abolition a part of our struggles, and this has been a good reminder of that.

Wild Idaho Rising Tide Monitors MegaLoad, Raises Objections

25 Oct

Cross Posted from WildIdahoRisingTide.org

On Wednesday, October 17, the Idaho Transportation Department issued a permit to Omega Morgan Inc. to haul a water treatment vessel of unknown ownership up U.S. Highway 12 between 10 pm and 5:30 am on Monday night, October 22, through Thursday night, October 25.  At 300 feet, this longest overlegal load to ever traverse the wild and scenic river corridor and largest wildlands complex in the contiguous U.S. states weighs 520,000 pounds and measures 20 feet wide and 22 feet high.  Like the four 226-foot-long ConocoPhillips megaloads and one since dismantled ExxonMobil test validation module that Idahoans monitored last year, it will probably encounter difficult passage frustrated by impending snow and tight curves between roadside rock cliffs and guard-railed precipices over the Lochsa and Middle Fork Clearwater rivers.

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VIDEO: Solidarity from the Pacific Coast of Canada to the Gulf Coast of Texas

25 Oct

Cross Posted from TarSandsBlockade.org

Today, Defend Our Coast events marked the largest act of non-violent civil disobedience to stop tar sands pipelines and tankers that Canada has ever seen.

Communities across BC linked arms to symbolize the unbroken wall of opposition to tar sands tankers and proposed pipelines, like Enbridge’s Northern Gateway and Kinder Morgan’s TransMountain, and the danger they pose to the Canadian Pacific Coast’s waterways, livelihoods, and indigenous sovereignty.

And in case you needed yet another reminder that the movement against Big Oil’s pet project in the tar sands is more united and thriving than ever, even in the face of industry and government repression, check out the following message from our friends up North:

*That’s what solidarity looks like, from the Pacific Coast to the Gulf Coast. *

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Gulf Coast Oilfield Wife, Mother of 6, Cherri Foytlin Chains Self to Keystone XL Pipeyard Gate

25 Oct

Cross Posted from TarSandsBlockade.org

UPDATE 4:30PM – Cherri has been released from jail on a $2,500 bail

Demonstrate your support for Cherri for defending our coasts with a donation to her bail fund.

UPDATE 3:30PM – Cherri’s Bail is set at $2,500. We expect her out within an hour.

She’s being charged with Class A Misdemeanor Criminal Trespass of a Habitation/Shelter/Superfund/Infrastructure… This is a new one for us. There are obviously some special designations attached to this charge. We’ll chat with our lawyers and send some details soon.

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