On Wednesday, November 28, performer and environmental educator Dana Lyons brought his Great Coal Train Tour to Pullman, Washington, and offered a free afternoon community organizing workshop and a live evening concert at Washington State University (WSU). Singer and guitarist Dana Lyons hails from Bellingham, Washington – ground-zero of Northwest resistance to coal exports, near the largest proposed coal port facility in North America. Best known for his comedy hit song Cows with Guns, Dana has recorded eight albums during his lifetime artistic career and worked around the Earth to raise awareness, activism, and funds for environmental and social justice issues. During his 40-plus-show tour, Dana has visited dozens of communities throughout four Northwestern states, from Billings to Bellingham and from Portland to Coos Bay, along the route of proposed coal export trains that could carry 160 million tons of coal per year from Montana and Wyoming to the Columbia River and West Coast and via supertanker to China. He has networked with local residents and organizers across the region, who are working to stop potential coal mines, trains, and ports for health, safety, traffic, economic, and environmental reasons. Hosted by the WSU Environmental Task Force and Environmental Science Club student groups, Dana’s fun, inspiring, and family-oriented Pullman concert intermingled with place-based storytelling catalyzed community interest and engagement in this significant regional issue among the 30 audience members. For more information about Northwest coal exports, see CoalTrainFacts.org, PowerPastCoal.org, Coal-Free-Bellingham.org, and WildIdahoRisingTide.org. Visit Dana’s website to explore his music, videos, merchandise, and tour schedule at CowsWithGuns.com and listen to his coal train song, Sometimes.
On the Monday, December 3, Climate Justice Forum radio program, Wild Idaho Rising Tide welcomes Jasmine Zimmer-Stucky, community organizer for Columbia Riverkeeper in Portland and an activist trainer at the Northwest Extraction Resistance Workshop last June in Spokane. Jasmine talks about the Morrow Pacific Project proposal to build port facilities in Boardman and Saint Helens, Oregon, which would export Montana and Wyoming coal by Northwest rail, river barges, and ocean-going ships to Asia. She discusses citizen resistance, through petition drives, public rallies and hearings, and comment periods, to the potentially detrimental impacts of exported coal extraction, transportation, and combustion as well as other Riverkeeper initiatives. Broadcast on KRFP Radio Free Moscow between 7:30 and 9:30 pm PST live at 92.5 FM and online, and later aired on KMEC in Ukiah, California, the show also covers continent-wide dirty energy developments and opposition. Listen to an edited recording of the December 3 Climate Justice Forum posted in Radio4All. Thanks to the generous, anonymous listener who adopted program host Helen Yost as his KRFP DJ!
If volatile, climate changed weather does not mercifully impede passage to Alberta tar sands operations, two more Sunshine Oilsands wastewater evaporators could traverse U.S. Highway 12 between 10 pm and 5:30 am next Monday and Tuesday night, December 3 and 4. The Idaho Transportation Department in Boise issued permits on Friday afternoon, November 30, allowing Omega Morgan to haul both over-legal equipment shipments weighing 80,000 pounds and measuring up to 53 feet long, 20 feet wide, and 21 feet tall. Moving at close to normal speeds, each eastbound megaload could cross Idaho separately in one night, from the Port of Wilma in Clarkston, Washington, along Idaho Route 128 and Highway 12, to Lolo Pass on the Montana border. Three flagging teams and pilot vehicles and two trucks with portable signs (but no ambulance) will travel with each module and escort traffic around the convoy at pre-identified pull-offs, as required by the Omega Morgan transportation plan that limits traffic delays to less than 15 minutes. Continue reading
TWO MORE TAR SANDS MEGALOADS ON HIGHWAY 12 ON MONDAY & TUESDAY
We received this news release today and will provide monitoring and protesting prompts soon:
Equipment shipments may travel on U.S. 12 starting Monday
Read more: Update on Tar Sands Megaloads in the Northern Rockies
(Cross-Posted on Earth First! Newswire from Wild Idaho Rising Tide facebook page)
The Monday, November 26, Climate Justice Forum radio program, hosted by Wild Idaho Rising Tide, features Peter Goodman, an Occupy Albany activist who participated in the November 3 Stand Up! Fight Back! Against Big Coal in the Northwest workshop in Spokane, Washington. Peter will discuss the potentially detrimental impacts of proposed coal export train traffic and port terminals at Boardman, Saint Helens, and Coos Bay, and associated Oregon citizen resistance through petition drives, public rallies and hearings, and government statements and resolutions. Brian Koepke, an environmental science graduate student, technical assistant, and outreach coordinator with the Washington State University Environmental Science Club/Task Force, will talk about a recent mock oil spill demonstration and other initiatives on campus and Dana Lyons’ workshop and concert on Wednesday. Broadcast on KRFP Radio Free Moscow between 7:30 and 9:30 pm PST live at 92.5 FM and online, and later aired on KMEC in Ukiah, California, the show also covers continent-wide dirty energy developments and opposition to fossil fuel extraction and transportation projects. Thanks to the generous, anonymous listener who adopted program host Helen Yost as his KRFP DJ!
On Wednesday, November 28, performer and environmental educator Dana Lyons will bring his Great Coal Train Tour to Pullman, Washington, offering a community organizing workshop from 3 to 4 pm and a concert between 7 and 9 pm. Since September 8, he has visited dozens of communities throughout four Northwestern states, from Billings to Bellingham and from Portland to Coos Bay. Along the route of proposed coal export trains that could carry 160 million tons of coal per year from Montana and Wyoming to the Columbia River and West Coast and via supertanker to China, Dana’s fun, inspiring, and family-oriented concerts intermingled with place-based storytelling have fostered interest and understanding of this significant regional issue. Extending into 40-plus shows through April 13, his tour provides accurate and intricate descriptions of coal export impacts, as it catalyzes public engagement, discussion, and opposition to this regionally and globally detrimental scheme.
Singer and guitarist Dana Lyons hails from Bellingham, Washington – ground-zero of Northwest resistance to coal exports, near the largest proposed coal port facility in North America, SSA Marine’s Gateway Pacific Terminal at Cherry Point. Best known for his comedy hit song Cows with Guns, Dana has recorded eight albums during his lifetime artistic career, including Circle the World and At Night They Howl at the Moon: Environmental Songs for Kids. Working around the Earth to raise awareness, activism, and funds for environmental and social justice issues, Dana has collaborated with Dr. Jane Goodall and her environmental group Roots and Shoots. Besides bolstering community knowledge of potential Northwest coal exports, Dana has been meeting, learning, and networking with local residents and organizers across the region who are working to stop proposed coal mines, trains, and ports for health, safety, traffic, economic, and environmental reasons. Continue reading
With so many things happening on November 19, Tar Sands Blockade unfortunately was not able to give a proper shout-out to many of our comrades who also did solidarity actions and sent in photos during their Day of Mass Action on November 19. So with their many apologies, here are the solidarity actions that they didn’t get to post earlier.
Sandpoint, ID – Nov 17
Moscow, ID – Nov 19
Read more: Solidarity Actions
(By Tar Sands Blockade)
(Zach Hagadone photo)
“When we start putting jobs and the economy ahead of the environment and our children, we’re fools”
A plan by some of the globe’s biggest mining companies to ship hundreds of millions of tons of coal by rail through Idaho’s panhandle is still in its infancy, but that’s not stopping activists from raising a ruckus.
Members of Moscow-based Wild Idaho Rising Tide joined Occupy Spokane on November 17 to take their opposition to the Idaho panhandle town of Sandpoint, where many of the shipments would roll through on a journey from Montana to the Pacific Coast. The coal would ultimately be loaded onto ships bound for China or India.
Read more: Groups Protest Proposed Coal Shipments through Idaho Panhandle
(By Zach Hagadone, Boise Weekly)
Cross-posted in the Earth First! Newswire: Groups Protest Proposed Coal Shipments through Idaho Panhandle
In conjunction with grassroots climate justice and tar sands co-activists from Canada, the Northeast, Texas, and Utah, near ruptured pipelines and oil spills, and across the continent, regional Wild Idaho Rising Tide members gathered at 5 pm on Monday, November 19, near the Moscow, Idaho, City Hall, for a Climate Change Resistance Solidarity Action. To recognize and support Tar Sands Blockade’s Mass Action in East Texas on Monday, blocking TransCanada construction of the Keystone XL pipeline, 350.org’s march around the White House and rally in Washington DC on Sunday, again denouncing Obama administration backing of the Keystone XL, and over 40 worldwide climate solidarity actions, a handful of stalwart tar sands megaload protesters wore WIRT T-shirts and hoisted the organizational banner and protest signs to compose solidarity photos posted and shared with courageous comrades in the Texas trees and numerous anti-tar sands allies. The rapid reunion demonstrated the participants’ ongoing resistance of tar sands and fossil fuel exploitation by oil companies like ExxonMobil, Shell, and TransCanada that are expanding Alberta tar sands mining operations on indigenous lands and associated production and transportation facilities throughout the U.S. Compelled by the aftershock of Hurricane Sandy, Midwestern crop failures, Western wildfires, the hottest year on record, aggressive corporate development of dirty energy, and presidential campaign silence on urgent climate change issues, American citizens and disproportionately impacted victims of extreme weather disasters and pollution are collectively and increasingly demanding climate crisis resolutions through unconventional methods.
Nick Gier, Moscow
Bonner County Daily Bee 11/20/12
If the coal companies and their allies have their way, the nation’s largest coal terminal will be built just north of Bellingham, and 40 to 60 extra trains loaded with low-sulfur coal from southeastern Montana and Wyoming will pass through Sandpoint and Spokane.
The residents of Spokane will at least have a chance to have their concerns heard. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will conduct a “scoping” hearing on December 4 from 3 to 7 pm at the Spokane County Fairgrounds. Activists all along various rail routes are demanding that the scope of the environmental impact review be “from mines to ports,” not just the terminals themselves.
The people of Sandpoint will have no official say in this dramatic increase in train traffic. As a result, on Saturday, November 17, activists from the region converged on Sandpoint to stage demonstrations, distribute information, and protest proposals for more coal trains and ports. Continue reading