Wild Idaho Rising Tide Fundraiser is on Friday in Moscow
There are some people who believe nothing can be done to stop global warming. Helen Yost, founder of the Moscow-based environmental activism group Wild Idaho Rising Tide, is not one of them.
The group, which was formed in 2011 and is part of the national Rising Tide organization, has conducted protests and public education campaigns on numerous environmental issues during the past two years, most notably the Imperial Oil/ExxonMobil megaloads that came through Moscow last year carrying equipment bound for the company’s tar sands oil project in Alberta, Canada.
“We are part of a network of people who take direct action to confront the root causes of global climate change,” Yost said. “We call ourselves a direct action group.”
The group will host its Second Annual Celebration of Wild Idaho Rising Tide fundraiser on Friday in Moscow.
The event will feature live music by Dan Maher, Kelly Emo, Sharon Cousins, Josh Yeidel, and Henry C. and the Willards, along with a potluck dinner, raffle drawing, no-host bar, and a slide show of the group’s activities.
Depending on weather conditions, the evening will begin at 6:30 pm with a parade from Moscow’s Friendship Square to the 1912 Center led by the Moscow Volunteer Peace Band.
Emo said he got behind the efforts of Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) after watching the 2010 Josh Fox documentary film Gasland last year in Moscow.
“After I saw that movie, I was irate,” Emo said of the film, which deals with the issue of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. “That is what made me want to help with Helen’s cause.”
Fracking is the process of creating fractures in rocks and rock formations by injecting fluid into cracks to force them to open further, allowing more oil and gas to be extracted.
Yost, who has been arrested once and cited once in connection with the megaload protests, said direct action environmental protests are growing all across the country – and they are affecting energy companies’ profits.
She estimated protests against the megaloads have cost Imperial Oil $2 billion, because of shipment delays and additional expenses for security.
The idea, she said, is to “make it too expensive for them to continue their polluting ways.”
In addition to the continuing protests against the Alberta tar sands project, WIRT has been involved in trying to derail a plan to ship additional trainloads of coal from Montana to proposed export facilities on the Washington coast.
The group also is planning actions in southern Idaho, where fracking is being proposed in the Payette River Basin.
This summer, members of WIRT will meet with other Rising Tide activists and allies in Utah to protest a proposed tar sands project in that state.
“It is harder to walk all over people you can see,” Yost said.
(By Alan Solan, Inland 360, The Lewiston Tribune)
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