WIRT Newsletter: Rising Tide & Climate Movement, Totem Pole Journey, & Megaload/T​ar Sands News

Activists, friends, and supporters,


Leaked Stratfor PowerPoint Shows Corporation’s Fear of Activist Campaigns (August 3 Popular Resistance)

A Stratfor document released by Wikileaks reveals that big business interests take activists and their impacts seriously.  It advocates dividing and conquering various groups in four categories, who are working to stop the extraction, development, and transportation of tar sands.  “Pull opportunists and realists into compromised positions, convince idealists they have the facts wrong, and isolate the most dangerous group, the radicals.”  Please write a letter of support for Jeremy Hammond, who has pled guilty to the Stratfor hack and is currently collecting such letters to ask the judge for a sentence of only time served.

Northwest Fossil Fuels: Exports and Resistance from Oregon to Alaska (September 26 Rising Tide)

Across the Cascadia region, from the Continental Divide to the Pacific Coast and from northern California to south central Alaska, huge private corporations are developing energy infrastructure that imposes dangerous risks and associated impacts in the short-term and compromised functionality and management in the mid- and long-term.  Their antiquated analyses consider profit maximization over the real concerns of residents and the interdependence of all life that transcends political boundaries.  People throughout Cascadia need to exercise their rights to free, prior, and informed consent of energy projects affecting the natural world upon which present and future generations depend.

Rising Tide activists Adam from Seattle, David from Portland, Helen from Moscow, and Maryam from Vancouver, B.C. presented an insightful panel discussion and community forum on these topics on Thursday evening, September 26, at the University Temple United Methodist Church in the University District of Seattle.  After long journeys that day, we talked about Northwest fossil fuel corridors and transportation projects, including megaload routes, from North Dakota to Washington and from Oregon to Alaska.  Our discussions about regional export of Alberta tar sands, Bakken shale oil, and Powder River Basin coal, and imports of tar sands mining equipment met with thoughtful concluding questions and extended post-forum conversations with 40 audience members.  Ideas for similar educational events arose later that weekend among Rising Tide groups who met near Bellingham.

Rising Tide Regional Strategy Summit (September 27-29 Rising Tide)

Two weeks ago, some of the 29 Rising Tide activists who participated in a weekend strategy summit at a Bellingham area farm touched coastal waters and joined the Lummi Tribe totem pole blessing ceremony at Cherry Point, Washington, near the site of the proposed Gateway Pacific coal export terminal.  (Please see the following Totem Pole Journey links and listen to the Climate Justice Forum radio program on KRFP Radio Free Moscow every Monday evening, to hear parts of the hour-long recorded ceremony.)  After the festivities on Friday evening, an Occupy Spokane activist spoke at the strategy summit and, after returning home, committed to restarting Spokane Rising Tide.  The summit exceeded most of our expectations, bringing together experienced and emerging Rising Tide groups and key organizers from Vancouver/Coast Salish Territories, B.C., Bellingham, Seattle, Olympia, Portland, and Moscow, to strengthen our regional network and increase our communication and coordination.


Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. Gives Its Hacktivists the Same Name as Actual Activist Group (September 26 Wired)

Riding the pop culture wave of the television show Agents of SHIELD with Rising Tide North America

Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.: Meet Its Real-Life, Climate-Defending, Disney-Dissenting Villains (October 1 Yes!)

More misguided television/internet hype: strange associations for remote climate activists who consider even big cities bizarre

Timeline of the Climate Movement: How Direct Action Took Center Stage (October 2 Yes!)

“There’s a clear trajectory, too: away from ‘Big Green’ groups, who placed their hopes in electoral politics, and toward creative, high-stakes actions in the communities that have the most to lose.  Increasingly, direct action is seen not as a fringe tactic but as the next logical step when other avenues fail.  ‘When people see each other confronting power, their fear goes away…People are willing to take risks when they know their community has their back.’”  The interactive, graphic timeline embedded in this article could benefit from more extensive, detailed data that maps on-the-ground campaigns across the continent over the last decade.

Building the Environmental Movement Today: A Debate (October 3 Climate and Capitalism)

Sasha Ross’ critique of Chris Williams’ article Strategy and Tactics in the Environmental Movement, followed by Chris Williams’ retort

The Climate Movement’s Pipeline Preoccupation (October 8 Earth Island Journal)

Arielle, David, Kirby, and Maryam of our Rising Tide North America network penned this article about next steps for the climate movement, during and after the Keystone XL pipeline campaigns.

Keystone XL: The Art of NGO Discourse (April 12-14 Counterpunch)

The Grassroots Battle Against Big Oil (October 28 The Nation)

Tar Sands Blockade’s robust climate movement-building, grassroots resistance to fossil fuels deep in the belly of the Texas beast made the cover of The Nation magazine!  In blockaders’ own words: “From the Winnsboro tree blockade to Nacogdoches and Houston, from eminent domain abuse to climate justice, writer Wen Stephenson with The Nation extensively interviews several blockaders and our local allies, like the Austin Heights Baptist Church and Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Service, in one of the most in-depth profiles ever written about Tar Sands Blockade.” Continue reading