Fellow climate inhabitants,
UPCOMING ACTIVISM NEEDS YOU!
Tuesday, September 24: No, Actually, We Are The Rising Tide (September 24 Rising Tide North America)
On Thursday evening, September 24, Disney/ABC/Marvel Studios premiered their new TV show Agents of SHIELD, depicting a secret National Security Agency/Department of Homeland Security-style agency confronting a “looming threat” known as “The Rising Tide,” a cyber-terror group purportedly like Anonymous with a disturbingly similar Rising Tide logo. Please read the Rising Tide North America blog, sign a petition calling on Disney to stop portraying grassroots climate activist groups as terrorists, and widely share this opportunity to highlight the REAL work of Rising Tide.
Wednesday, September 25: Millennium Bulk Terminal Rally and Scoping Hearing in Spokane
Participate in the Spokane public rally and scoping hearing about the Millennium Bulk Terminal proposal for Longview, Washington coal export facilities on Wednesday, September 25! Palouse carpools depart the Wild Idaho Rising Tide (WIRT) Activist House in Moscow at 1 pm (please RSVP). A Riverfront Park rally with Backbone Campaign and regional comrades commences at 3 pm. Doors to the Spokane Convention Center open at 4 pm, and the public hearing runs from 5 to 8 pm. Please get an online lottery ticket to testify or share, wear red, and voice your concerns about the coal export impacts that county, state, and federal agencies should consider in an upcoming draft environmental impact statement. For more information, see:
Hearing: Impacts on Spokane of Longview Coal Export Proposal (Coal-Free Spokane)
All You Need to Know about the Longview Coal Export Hearing (Center for Justice)
What Can We Do to Stop Coal Exports in Longview? (Columbia Riverkeeper)
Environmental Review: Millennium Bulk Terminals Longview Proposal (Washington Department of Ecology)
Thursday, September 26: Weekly WIRT Potluck/Meeting
At 7 pm this Thursday at the WIRT Activist House, concerned citizens are meeting to discuss plans to confront possibly impending Highway 95 megaloads and state government policies at Capital for a Day and to organize upcoming events like WIRT’s participation in the University of Idaho Homecoming Parade. Please bring some food and/or beverages to share and your ideas and energies for creating megaload/tar sands protest signs and other projects.
Thursday, September 26: Northwest Fossil Fuels: Exports and Resistance from Oregon to Alaska
This Thursday at 7 pm, Rising Tide groups from Vancouver, B.C., and Moscow, Portland, and Seattle will host a panel discussion and community forum exploring corporate industry proposals and regional resistance to almost 20 coal, oil, and natural gas export terminals or expansions from Oregon to Alaska. Accompanying rail and waterway traffic threatens to transform the Northwest into a dirty fossil fuel corridor impacting human, environmental, and climate health. Together, these projects would release three times the global carbon emissions of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. But a powerful, grassroots, direct action movement has been emerging and organizing across the region against this onslaught. Join us in conversation and education, including a megaload campaign history presentation, at the University Temple United Methodist Church, 1415 NE 43rd Street in Seattle, at 7 pm this Thursday! Maybe our Moscow megaload protests will finally garner some broader recognition, albeit as an eternal side-kick to the Highway 12 saga, and people will take to the streets on other megaload routes.
Friday to Sunday, September 27 to 29: Rising Tide Regional Summit
Saturday, September 28: WIRT in the Homecoming Parade 2013: Vandal Pride Planetwide
Global climate change warriors Wild Idaho Rising Tide and allies are marching with our banners, protest signs, and hand-outs in the University of Idaho Homecoming Parade entitled Vandal Pride Planetwide. Meet with your friends, family, and posters at 9 am on Saturday, September 28, under the Rosauers sign in the parking lot at 411 North Main Street, to parade along Main Street to Seventh Street in Moscow, Idaho.
Sunday, September 29 (tentative): Nimiipuu Against Megaloads Teach-In
WIRT may not be able to notify you from the road about this opportunity to learn and build solidarity with Nez Perce tribal activists opposing megaloads. If this event happens, organizers may host it between 4 and 6 pm next Sunday at The Cave, 118 Main Street in Lapwai, Idaho, and Moscow/Pullman area carpools will depart the WIRT Activist House at 3 pm. Please contact Ciarra Greene at email@example.com for further information about the teach-in.
Monday, September 30: Governor Otter Sets September Capital for a Day in Potlatch (September 19 Governor Otter)
Governor Butch Otter is bringing his monthly Capital for a Day state government crony circus to the Potlatch Senior Center, from 9 am to 3 pm on Monday, September 30. According to a Moscow official, transportation department director Brian Ness will attend (permitting megaloads and heavier, longer semi-trucks and Highway 95 expansion onto Paradise Ridge,?) as well as tax commissioner Ken Roberts (dismissing property tax on oil and gas wells?) and representatives from the department of lands (allowing fracking in Idaho and drilling around rivers?) and the department of water resources (permitting leaking waste injection wells?). Like a January 2011 event in Culdesac, maybe we can drop hundreds of petition signatures on their table again or make them call for a break because they cannot stand the debate. Get ready for exasperating conversations with our state employees about controversial issues and policies.
Tuesday, October 1: Millennium Bulk Terminal Rally and Scoping Hearing in Pasco
Your assistance could help organize coal export resistance in the Tri-Cities!
Saturday, October 19: Global Frackdown (Food and Water Watch)
Action planning by WIRT and Idaho Residents Against Gas Extraction for an Idaho event requests your participation.
TAR SANDS MEGALOADS
Megaload Protest (August 7 Spokesman-Review)
Newly discovered, graphic photos of the second night of Nez Perce and allies’ attempts to block an Alberta tar sands megaload on Tuesday/Wednesday, August 6-7, portray the powerful spirit of the Nimiipuu people.
We posted updated photos on the WIRT facebook page, from multiple sources that covered the early August megaload protests, with many more coming soon. Volunteers are still working to catch up other media postings on our website, but September has been busy!
Flashpoints Interview of Helen Yost (September 17 Flashpoints)
In a quick recorded interview, Helen Yost of WIRT talked with KPFA’s Dennis Bernstein, between 0:59 and 10:32 of the nationally broadcast September 17 Flashpoints radio program, discussing the August megaload protests, federal preliminary injunction, arrested protester charges, possible Omega Morgan loads on Highway 95, the Friday benefit concert, and her activist motivations. Listen to Flashpoints on KPFA Berkeley or on Monday through Thursday between 6:30 and 7:30 pm on local community radio KRFP Radio Free Moscow.
Forest Service Closes Highway 12 to [Omega Morgan] Megaloads (September 19 Idaho Rivers United)
Although both the Missoulian and Seattle Times misquoted the September 17 Forest Service order to close Highway 12 between mileposts 75 and 174 as applying to all megaload transport companies, it prohibits ONLY Omega Morgan from hauling overlegal loads of specified dimensions and travel schedules on that road section that traverses the wild and scenic river corridor and national forest. See the linked Forest Service closure order that specifies this restriction.
Benefit Concert for Nez Perce Megaload Protesters
Thanks to EVERY ONE who contributed so wholeheartedly to the success of the Benefit Concert for Nez Perce Megaload Protesters on Friday evening, September 20, especially our honored Nimiipuu allies who traveled far and shared their megaload resistance insights and inspiring songs, drumming, and dance. Of the hundred or so participants who attended, we offer our sincere gratitude to Lucii George, Ciarra Greene, Erik Holt, Renee Holt, Julian Matthews, Leotis McCormack, Paulette Smith, event musicians, drummers, singers, co-sponsors, and coordinators/workers Lori Batina, Al Poplawsky, and Ellen Roskovich. WIRT and co-hosts raised over $1200 for the bail, legal, and court expenses of courageous defenders of indigenous lands, solidarity, sovereignty, and rights and blockaders of another tar sands invasion. If you missed this great anti-megaload community convergence covered by the New York Times, please consider generously donating to assist tribal recipients and specifying “Nez Perce arrestees” through WIRT’s WePay link.
Listen to an excerpt of benefit concert talks offered by Nimiipuu allies. Nez Perce Tribe Executive Committee member Leotis McCormack shares his thoughts between 21:50 and 15:58 of the September 23, 2013, KRFP Radio Free Moscow Evening Report, GE Megaload Injunction Petition.
Firm Seeks to Undo Megaloads Ruling (September 24 Lewiston Tribune)
Late last Friday, September 20, attorneys for Resources Conservation Company International (RCCI), the General Electric subsidiary that developed the tar sands evaporators stalled by Highway 12 protests and that intervened in the Nez Perce Tribe/Idaho Rivers United/Forest Service federal lawsuit, filed an expedited motion for Judge B. Lynn Winmill to reconsider his September 12 preliminary injunction ordering that the Forest Service close Highway 12 to its Omega Morgan-hauled megaloads. RCCI has also requested that the court impose a stay of the injunction, pending its appeal of it to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, if Judge Winmill denies reconsideration or concludes that the injunction should hold. Over the course of several days or weeks, RCCI’s petition to reconsider prompts all parties in the case to submit briefs and possibly schedule a hearing with Judge Winmill. He could either uphold or rescind his closure order, which if upheld, he could stay it or not, pending an RCCI appeal to the higher court that could proceed over weeks and months to come. Because these legal maneuvers make Highway 95 increasingly vulnerable to Omega Morgan evaporator passage, please remain continually vigilant of government and corporate activities on all regional highways and be prepared to answer calls to action as they arise.
If you are scouting the Port of Wilma off Route 128/Wawawai River/Down River Road in Washington near Lewiston, please look for an evaporator attached to a trailer and push and pull trucks in the lot with Omega Morgan vehicles, near a riverside warehouse shown in the following photo that currently hosts the megaload that could move up Highway 95. Scouts at the Port of Wilma and on Highway 95 have reported: 1) push, pull, and spare megaload-hauling trucks, an ironically green megaload trailer lurking behind them, and a possible guard at the Omega Morgan warehouse and lot, and 2) very recently extended road shoulders and missing white lines painted on the section of Highway 95 that the Idaho Transportation Department (ITD) expanded instead of reconstructing this spring. An escort truck for the returning Omega Morgan trailer almost ran a private vehicle off the road in the same area as the pole truck encounter a few weeks ago. The incensed driver reported it and filed a complaint in person at the Coeur d’Alene office of the Idaho State Police. Perhaps every one of us needs to do the same – for the record – if this and other remaining evaporators traverse Highways 12 or 95.
The Idaho Transportation Department resurveyed Highway 95 twice for reconstruction between mileposts 373 and 378 in the Tensed area, but has never fully reconstructed that stretch to widen each lane one foot, build six-foot shoulders, and replace culverts. Only three days before the first ExxonMobil/Imperial Oil loads rolled on Highway 95 on July 15, 2011, ITD patched some shoulders there, as documented by activist photos. ITD scheduled those same five highway miles for reconstruction this summer. It had announced a similar reconstruction project by mail to the same Tensed area landowners years ago, but it did not happen. Instead, Highway 12 received substantial revisions during the summer of 2009, partially financed by Imperial Oil. Even after extensive wrangling with nearby landowners since last summer, ITD suddenly only widened, resurfaced, and completed a stop-gap project by mid-August 2013. Tensed locals talk about all the accidents and deaths on that reservation stretch of Highway 95; meanwhile Idaho State Police and snow plows escort industrial convoys. Falling within the North Latah Highway District, apparently a project list with breakdowns of funding and dates can be procured from the Coeur d’Alene ITD office. Past records are more informative than current ones. With on-the-ground evidence and paper trails of projects likely influenced and changed by corporate interests, rural residents along scary, megaload-tattered Highway 95 are bracing for another onslaught that will again sacrifice Idahoans’ safety for public resource giveaways to oil companies.
NORTHWEST FOSSIL FUEL EXPORTS
Energy Transport and Export Information for Tribal Leaders and Staff (Association of Washington Tribes)
Documents Reveal Army Corps’ Earlier Concerns about Coal Trains and Wetlands (September 16 EarthFix)
800 People at Longview Hearing Say NO COAL (September 17 Columbia Riverkeeper)
Check out videos, photos, and information links from the September 17 Longview scoping hearing about the Millennium Bulk Terminal coal export proposal. The Spokane rally and hearing are next, on Wednesday, September 25.
How Coal and Oil Trains Will Block Traffic in Idaho (September 12 Sightline Daily)
How Coal and Oil Trains Will Block Traffic in Spokane County (September 19 Sightline Daily)
Coal Exports Face Unprecedented Opposition in the Pacific Northwest (September 20 EcoWatch)
SEPTEMBER SHOWDOWN AGAINST COAL EXPORTS (September 15-16)
Citizens Hold Up Coal Trains, Reclaim Right-of-Way from Coal Industry (September 16 Coal Export Action)
March, Sit-In Against Coal Ends with 13 Cited for Criminal Trespassing (September 16 Helena Independent Record)
Near train tracks in Helena on September 15, last year’s dream for Montana anti-coal export activism came true: our amazing allies inspired us all when 13 people occupied a railroad right-of-way used to transport coal through Helena, temporarily halting train traffic. All were released from custody and appeared in court on the next morning, to defend this fourth Northwest peaceful direct action on/near train tracks since December 2011. “A group of protesters staged a sit-in along train tracks in Helena on Sunday, to oppose a coal development proposal in the state. The act of civil disobedience led city police to issue 13 citations for criminal trespassing.”
Coal Export Action’s Nick Engelfried Gives the Scoop on Sunday’s Coal Rally (September 19 Liberal America)
How to Stop a Coal Train in Its Tracks (September 21 Waging Nonviolence)
Arch Coal’s permit to mine the Otter Creek Mine is the last hurdle for the company to break ground on one of the largest coal mines in North America. The Montana Department of Environmental Quality is currently reviewing the permit application that requires the final votes of the State Land Board for approval. Exporting and burning Otter Creek coal in overseas power plants would release more than 2.5 billion tons of heat-trapping carbon dioxide. The time to organize against a potential major source of climate change and local pollution is now: “That was when I realized we had actually shut down the rail line. Although the civil disobedience hadn’t taken place on the railroad tracks themselves, Montana Rail Link was unwilling to move trains through while a large-scale protest was taking place. Without expecting to, we’d apparently found a loophole in the complicated legal precedents that had confused us while we did our research. By deciding to keep people off the tracks, we avoided the worst legal repercussions of an action on railroad property. But we’d shut down the rail line anyway.”
September Showdown Against Coal Exports, 2013 (Coal Export Action photos)
Wild Idaho Rising Tide
P.O. Box 9817, Moscow, Idaho 83843