Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Throwing Down the Gauntlet

Today President Obama rejected a permit for the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, amidst growing public outcry and civil disobedience in Washington, D.C. against this project. The extraction process from the tar sands, the piping of crude oil through a major aquifer, the impact of pricing increases in the USA because it's being produced for export, ad infinitum, have given him enough reason to go up against Hillary Clinton's State Department position on this issue.

But that's not really the crux of the issue for the serious environmental protest, primarily that led by Bill McKibben, who takes the stand against the carbon impact of this project and all extractive resources (oil, coal and gas). Reduced to its fundamentals, climate change is being fueled by carbon emissions that continue to increase year over year, even as the carbon dioxide in the atmosphere creates climate change and volatility leading to draught, food instability and increasingly violent and extreme weather that's responsible for tremendous damage globally. The only answer is to stop the use of these fuels before runaway climate change takes place, it's not something that can be "mitigated". The science behind this is now definitive. The time is short.

Orion Magazine has showcased some articles about the ongoing fight by those committed to taking action in the face of a global emergency. Bill McKibben writes about Tim DeChristopher's lone paddle in the oil auction that has landed him in federal prison. McKibben sees this as a beginning of a movement that began coalescing on the first Earth Day in 1970 and that must now move into a more intensive phase.

The Orion interview of Tim DeChristopher is here, a story about "This is What Love Looks Like". It's a beautiful piece about a powerful action that's reverberating through more and more people.

Final 60-day deadline (imposed by a Republican Congress) is 21 February 2012 for Obama to deny the Keystone XL permit. Public actions to support denial are being taken as follows:

Petition and demonstration at the Culver City office of Obama for America, Saturday Feb. 4, 2012, 12 pm
*NOTE* this event has been postponed in favor of a much larger event, keep this OFA page bookmarked for future planning.

Tar Sands Action planning on Facebook

Sierra Club - Beyond Coal

Greenhouse Data Tool - search emission sources in your area