Tag Archives: utah

Video: Activists Shut Down First Tar Sands Mine in Utah

3 Aug

by Main Canyon / Peaceful Uprising

Respect Existence, or Expect Resistance!

Earlier this week activists converged at PR Springs, site of the first proposed tar sands mine in the United States. They shut down work at the mine, and road construction, for the entire day.

 

For more information visit: http://www.peacefuluprising.org/actioncampaction

Please LIKE and SHARE to let US Oil Sands know–if you build it, WE WILL COME!

Check out Climate Justice Activists Occupy Two Tar Sands Mining Sites in Utah for an earlier report on this action.

Utah Tar Sands Action Camp July 21-28

9 May

Cross Posted from Seeds for Peace

UtahTarSandsCamp2

This summer, people from across the country will come together to stop the first tar sands mine in the USA from ever breaking ground. Activists from Utah-based organizations Peaceful UprisingCanyon Country Rising TideBefore it Starts, and more have joined forces to make sure this is a powerful and effective moment in the growing movement to stop extreme extraction.

The Canadian petroleum corporation US Oil Sands, Inc is targeting the remote state lands of eastern Utah to be the first tar sands project in the USA. Because political and regulatory objections are diminished in Utah, this project at PR Spring now has the green-light from the state to begin commercial operations.

If companies like US Oil Sands can prove that these types of dirty extraction operations are economically viable in Utah, then more tar sands and oil shale projects will spring up across the region. The legal efforts to stop this  project have stalled construction, but time has run out. It is now time for people to come together and say NO Tar Sands in the US, NO Tar Sands anywhere!

Utah Tar Sands Resistance Disrupts Energy Conference

8 May

UPDATE: New video of Utah Tar Sands Resistance Action:

 

by Brittany Green-Miner and Caroline Connolly, Cross Posted from Fox 13

utahtarsandsresistance

SALT LAKE CITY – Protesters stormed an energy conference at the University of Utah on Tuesday, criticizing the university for holding a meeting that focused on tar sands development in the western United States.

Shouting at a crowd of potential investors and researchers, protesters with the Utah Tar Sands Resistance said a tar sands project in Utah would destroy the state, temporarily halting discussion over oil development projects in Utah.

“People will be coming from all over the country this summer to stop the U.S. Oil Sands mine from happening,” one protester said.

Continue reading

6,000 Coyotes Killed in Utah Bounty Program

8 May

by Grant Olsen, Cross Posted from Exposing the Big Game

Utah's bounty program is not only ineffective at reducing populations, it incentivizes fraud, resulting in scores of dead and dismembered coyotes in other states (photo from field and stream.com)

Utah’s bounty program is not only ineffective at reducing populations, it incentivizes fraud, resulting in scores of dead and dismembered coyotes in other states (photo from http://www.fieldandstream.com)

SALT LAKE CITY — More than 6,000 dead coyotes have been redeemed by hunters since Utah’s Division of Wildlife Resources launched its coyote bounty program last September.

The DWR hopes its ambitious plan will eliminate a significant portion of the state’s coyote population, which in turn will benefit the deer herds on which they prey. Officially known as the Predator Control Program, the incentive-based program pays hunters $50 for every coyote they kill.

Other states have implemented bounty programs over the years, but rarely on this scale. Even the New York Times has taken note of Utah’s Predator Control Program, calling it “one of the nation’s largest hunter-based efforts to manage predatory wildlife.”

Camilla Fox, executive director of Project Coyote, says that the Predator Control Program is “ecologically reckless, economically unjustifiable and ethically reprehensible.”

According to Fox, most government agencies acknowledge that coyote bounties are not only ineffective at reducing coyote populations, but are often counterproductive. She asserts that decades of research suggests that the systematic killing of coyotes increases reproduction, immigration and survival.

Continue reading

Ecoprisoner Tim DeChristopher moved to isolated confinement

28 Mar

Tim DeChristopher after bidding in the 2008 auction.

The following is a message from the group Peaceful Uprisings, who has coordinated much of the support for Tim DeChristopher who was arrested for disrupting a December 2008 oil and gas lease auction on public land in Utah, conducted by the Bureau of Land Management. In July 2011, Judge Benson sentenced DeChristopher to two years in prison:

“On the evening of Friday, March 9th, Tim was summarily removed from the Minimum Security Camp where he has been held since September 2011, and moved into the FCI Herlong’s Special Housing Unit (SHU). Tim was informed by Lieutenant Weirich that he was being moved to the SHU (also referred to as “the hole”) because an unidentified Congressman had called from Washington DC, complaining of an email that Tim had sent to a friend. Tim was inquiring about the reported business practices of one of his contributors, threatening to return the money if their values no longer aligned with his own. For some absurd reason, this warrants an investigation. Tim will be held in isolated confinement until the investigation is concluded. There is no definite timeline for inmates being held in the SHU, some waiting months for the conclusion of an investigation.

 

FCI Herlong, California, minimum security camp

In the SHU, Tim’s movements are severely restricted. In the past two weeks, he has been allowed out of his 8 X 10 cell (which he shares with another inmate) four times, each time for less than an hour. Tim is allowed one book in his cell, and four in his property locker.  His writing means are restricted to a thin ink cartridge which makes correspondence extremely difficult.   He can receive mail from the outside, but has no other form of communication other than 15 minutes of phone calls per month Continue reading

Earth First! makes a mess of SITLA tar sands plans in Utah

21 Feb

Yesterday, February 20, the Earth First! 2012 Organizers Conference & Winter Rendezvous culminated in a rowdy demonstration outside the School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration (SITLA) offices in downtown Salt Lake City. Earth First! activists staged their protest with local organizers from Utah Tar Sands Resistance and Canyon Country Rising Tide. The offices were closed for Presidents’ Day, but a clear (and messy) message was left at the doorstep—a mock oil spill accompanied by a mural reading “Hey SITLA: Tar Sands Outta Utah!” 

The project would lease school trust lands for tar sands extraction in the Book Cliffs area, directly impacting PR Springs, a site which is also utilized for camping and recreation.

“Destruction of education trust lands through tar sands mining is contrary to the mandate of this agency Continue reading

Walter Bond sentenced to another 7 years in prison

18 Oct

Last week, October 13, 2011, Walter Bond was sentenced to 87 months in prison for Animal Liberation Front arsons in Utah. This new sentencing will run consecutive with his time in Colorado, giving Walter a total of 12 years for his actions as the ALF Lone Wolf. In his final statement to the court, Bond had this to say:

“I’m here today because of the arsons I committed at the Tandy Leather Factory in Salt Lake City and the Tiburon restaurant in Sandy, Utah, which sells the incredibly cruel product foie gras. The U.S. attorney wants to give me the maximum sentence and beyond not because of my “crimes” but because I am unrepentant and outspoken. My intuition tells me that this court is not going to show me mercy because I become suddenly sorry. So instead of lying to the court in a feeble attempt to save myself, as I’m certain many do when they face their sentencing day, allow me instead to tell you what I am sorry for.

“I am sorry that when I was 19 years old I built two slaughterhouses that are still killing animals even now as I speak. I am sorry that Tandy Leather sells skin that has been ripped from the dead, and often live bodies of such animals as cows, ostriches, rabbits, snakes and pigs. I am sorry that the leather tanneries that supply Tandy Leather Factory poison the Earth with dangerous chemicals. I am sorry that the restaurant Tiburon profits from the force feeding of geese and ducks until their livers explode so that rich people can then use that as a pate for crackers and bread. I am sorry that they make a living from the dead bodies of wild and exotic animals. I am sorry that we live in a day and age where you can rape a child or beat a woman unconscious and receive less prison time than an animal liberation activist that attacked property instead of people.

“I am sorry that my brother was so desperate to get out of debt that he flew from Iowa to Colorado just to get me in a taped and monitored conversation for reward money. I am sorry I am biologically related to such a worthless little snitch. I am sorry that I waited so long to become an Animal Liberation Front operative. For all of these things I will always have some regret. But as far as the arsons at the Leather Factory and Tiburon, I have no remorse.

“I realize that the laws of the land favor a businesses ability to make a profit over an animals right to life. It also used to favor white business owners ability to profit from a black persons slavery. It also used to favor a husbands ability to viciously attack his wife and act on her as if she were an object. Those who broke the law and damaged property to stand against those oppressions were also called “terrorists” and “fanatics” in their time but that did not change the fact that society progressed and is still progressing along those lines.”

In a statement expressing her full support for her son, Bond’s mother, Mickie Coyote, had this to say about her son: “Walter Bond was born a warrior; he did not choose it because he found a worthy or righteous cause. A warrior is born with a fire inside and a need to right wrongs. He is born with a compassion and caring rooted so deeply that it is difficult to walk away from any sort of cruelty, whether it involves the people, the Animal Nations, the oceans and seas or the whole of Mother Earth and Father Sky.”

In an earlier statement from Bond, he explained that his brother, who’s name is redacted from legal documents, had been working for the ATF since July 1st, 2010. If anyone has any further public information regarding Bond’s brother and the extent of his cooperation, please post it as a comment to the Earth First! Newsire’s Informant Tracking service.

Updated information on sending letters or donations to Bond can be found at his support website: SupportWalter.org

Can Deep Green Resistance bridge the gap between two political prisoners in Utah?

30 Aug

by Panagioti, co-editor of the Earth First! Journal

Tim DeChristopher, Utah's "Bidder 70"

The eco-resistance movement is in the midst of a growth spurt. Cases like that of Tim DeChristopher, known as Utah’s Bidder 70, represent a significant change in the battlefield between ecology and industrialism; they whisper to the potential of a broad, massive civil disobedience movement. One that might embrace tactics which have thus far been relegated to the fringes of environmentalism in the US, with the exception of a few instances, like the Redwood campaign in northern California in the 90s, or perhaps the anti-nuke fights of the 70s and 80s.

DeChristopher refused to apologize and is now serving a 2 year sentence for his actions. He called for more to join his style of defiance.

Another 26 people were arrested at the courthouse following his sentencing, and since that time another couple hundred have been arrested at the White House, and elsewhere, during civil disobedience actions to display their opposition to tar sands infrastructure.

Walter Bond, awaiting sentencing in Utah

Sharing the county corrections facility in Utah is another political prisoner. Or a prisoner of war, as Walter Bond prefers to be known. Before Bond was arrested, he was known as “Lonewolf.” He was arrested for sabotage against directed against animal abuse, and in his view, against the entire industrial society that is dependent on exploitative industries. See our earlier post on Bond, “Green is the New Rage”

Bond is less likely to attract as broad of a crowd at his sentencing on October 13 (although people are mobilizing to support him.) But his case represents another potential component of the eco-resistance movement’s growth spurt. And while neither of these prisoners’ support groups may express overt affinity for each other, there is a new network forming who seem to be making a case that these two prisoners could have a lot more in common than one might think.

No, we’re not talking about Earth First! (we said new network, EF! is over 30 now… that’s no spring chicken!) We’re talking about Deep Green Resistance (DGR). The recently established organizing effort based on the recent book of the same name, spawning from Derrick Jensen’s Endgame books. DGR embraces an explicit strategy of building mass aboveground support for an underground movement that can dismantle industrial infrastructure. Similar perhaps to the support role that Quakers played in aboveground organizing which complimented the militant underground abolitionist efforts of Harriet Tubman or John Brown and company.

While the actions that Walter Bond was charged for may not represent the ideal strategy of dismantling infrastructure as DGR favors, his incarceration does pose the question of how to relate between the aboveground and underground eco-resistance movements.

How the official DGR representatives handle this issue has yet to be seen. As for the Earth First! Journal, we will continue supporting both of these prisoners.

Addresses and updates on their cases can be found at their support websites: Support Walter.org    Bidder70.org  (as of this post, Tim is in transit to a federal facility)

Tim DeChristopher to appeal conviction

3 Aug

But in the meantime, keep sending letters.

Packages are not allowed, only letters in regular envelopes addressed to the following: 

                                                    Tim DeChristopher
                                                     #2011 – 06916
                                                     c/o Davis County Correctional Facility
                                                     PO Box 130
                                                     Farmington, UT 84025

Keep up with Tim’s case at Bidder70.org

Salt Lake City, UT—Attorneys for an environmental activist convicted of federal charges for derailing an oil and gas lease auction on public land are appealing his conviction and two-year prison sentence.

Tim DeChristopher’s attorneys filed a notice of appeal Monday in Salt Lake City’s U.S. District Court. The document says an appeal will be filed with the 10th Circuit Court of Appeals in Denver. DeChristopher was convicted in March of two felony counts for interfering with and making false representations at a government auction.

He ran up $1.8 million in false bids on parcels near Utah’ Arches and Canyonlands national parks. DeChristopher maintains his bids were an act of civil disobedience. Last week, a federal judge sentenced him to two years prison, three years of probation and a $10,000 fine.  Source

Timothy DeChristopher Found Guilty for Climate Civil Disobedence

7 Mar

by Jamie Henn
published at the Huffington Post

On Thursday, a jury in Salt Lake City declared climate activist Tim DeChristopher guilty for his interference with an oil and gas auction held at the end of the Bush administration. He faces a sentence of up to 10 years, to be determined by a judge.

The following is a transcript and video of Tim’s speech outside of the courthouse after the guilty verdict was handed down. Tim’s words are reminiscent of the heroes of other social movements that used civil disobedience to achieve their ends. And they’re a challenge to all of us working to solve the climate crisis to consider our own willingness to go to jail for our beliefs (in fact, a website, Climate Direct Action, has been set up for people to sign up to learn more about how to take part in civil disobedience for the climate).

Here is Tim’s speech: