BREAKING: Construction of Keystone XL pump station shut down in largest action yet by the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance.

TEN PEOPLE ARRESTED. Please donate to their bail fund at http://gptarsandsresistance.org/donate/ and share this around. We managed to shut down the site until a volunteer firefighter reportedly injured one of the lockdowners while attempting to use the Jaws-of-Life to extract them. Folks soonafter unlocked out of concerns for their safety.

Scroll down for action updates throughout the day. You can also follow @gptarsandsresistance and @iamed_nc for updates.

BREAKING: Construction of Keystone XL pump station shut down in largest action yet by the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance.

Four people are locked through the treads of an excavator

Four people are locked through the treads of an excavator

Seminole, OK: Early this morning, eight individuals blocked construction of a pump station for TransCanada’s controversial Keystone XL tar sands pipeline on Seminole land-by-treaty by locking on to equipment in the largest action yet by the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance. The group took action today, physically halting the construction process, as a part of an effort to prevent the Great Plains from being poisoned by inherently dangerous tar sands infrastructure, as well as demonstrate the necessity for direct confrontation with industries that profit off of continued ecological devastation and the poisoning of countless communities from “Alberta, CA” to the Gulf. This action comes during the first day of a nationwide week of coordinated anti-extraction action under the banner of Fearless Summer.

“As a part of a direct action coalition working and living in an area that has been historically sacrificed for the benefit of petroleum infrastructure and industry, we believe that building a movement that can resist all infrastructure expansion at the point of construction is a necessity. In this country, over half of all pipeline spills happen in Texas, Louisiana, and Oklahoma. Looking at the mainstream keystone opposition, this fact is invisible—just like the communities affected by toxic refining and toxic extraction,” said Eric Whelan, spokesperson for Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance. “We’re through with appealing to a broken political system that has consistently sacrificed human and nonhuman communities for the benefit of industry and capital.”

“The pipelines that poisoned the Kalamazoo River and Mayflower, Arkansas, were not the Keystone XL. Tar sands infrastructure is toxic regardless of the corporation or pipeline. For that reason we are opposed not only to the Keystone XL, but all tar sands infrastructure that threatens the land and her progeny,” said Fitzgerald Scott, who was arrested in April for locking his arm inside a concrete-filled hole on the Keystone XL easement, and locked to an excavator today. “While KXL opponents wait with baited breath for Obama’s final decision regarding this particular pipeline, other corporations, including Enbridge, will be laying several tar sands pipelines across the continent. The Enbridge pipelines will carry the same volumes of the same noxious substance; therefore, Enbridge should get ready for the same resistance.”

The Tar Sands megaproject is the largest industrial project in the history of humankind, destroying an area of pristine boreal forest which, if fully realized, will leave behind a toxic wasteland the size of Florida. The Tar Sands megaproject continues to endanger the health and way of life of the First Nations communities that live nearby by poisoning the waterways which life in the area depends on. This pipeline promises to deliver toxic diluted bitumen to the noxious Valero Refinery at the front door of the fence-line community of Manchester in Houston.

Two folks locked down in front of work trailer on site.

And yet another two locked to each other on top of a work trailer!

There is staunch resistance to the expansion of Tar sands mining and infrastructure growing across the heartland of “North America,” in areas long considered sacrifice zones. Currently activists are occupying an Enbridge pump station in so-called “Ontario” to prevent the reversal of the Line9 pipeline. The rise of Idle No More in defense of indigenous sovereignty across Turtle Island is in large part to protect lands and waters from toxic industries, and peoples of the Great Sioux Nation and tribal governments across “South Dakota” are avowing their opposition to the northern segment of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.

Twitter: @gptarsandsresistance
1PM: Bail has been set for 9/10 blockaders at $1,500, and $1,000 for the police liaison.
12noon:Fitzgerald’s injuries were not sufficient to prevent him from being returned to police custody. Martin, however, has called and notified us that he received a laceration when the Jaws-of-Life were being used to attempt to extract him. His arm is swelling up and he is attempting to get additional medical examination.
10:00AM: Nine confirmed arrests, police liaison is not accounted for. Earlier, police threatened him with kidnapping charges if he didn’t furnish keys to unlock remaining lockdowners. Will update when more news is available.
9:00AM: Remaining lockdowners have unlocked.
8:40AM: Jaws of life used again on folks locking down. Reports of blood, difficult to confirm. Reports of at least one injury. All four people locked down to excavator have unlocked out of concern for their safety. All four in custody, with Fitzgerald Scott in an ambulance.
8:20AM: Cops moved everyone but lockdowners down the road, having difficulty seeing folks locked down to the excavator. Sounds of angle-grinding have stopped, and it appears that folks are still holding strong.
8:00AM: After threatening to break blockaders arms with the jaws of life, firefighters are attempting to extract them using what sounds like an angle-grinder. Reports of screaming from folks on the road. No injuries reported yet. All lockdowners still holding strong!
7:30: Firetruck has arrived and firefighters are approaching folks locked to the excavator with bolt-cutters.
7:20AM: Police trying to order everyone off-site, threatening arrest
7:10AM:Total of four Seminole County police officers on site.
6:15AM: One person arrested–not a lockdowner.

 

19 thoughts on “BREAKING: Construction of Keystone XL pump station shut down in largest action yet by the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance.

  1. Pingback: BREAKING: Construction of KXL Pump Station Shut Down in Oklahoma | Earth First! Newswire

  2. Pingback: Fearless Summer: Oklahoma, Protesters Lock Down on KXL Pipeline Pump Station | PopularResistance.Org

  3. With the aid of such movements as Wiki Leaks and the efforts of independents like Snowden, and the heroic efforts of groups like Tar Sands Resistance, it seems we may be experiencing the beginning of a worldwide renaissance of reason over the propaganda of the dominant perspective. A free Internet, no doubt, is a driving force in this evolution.

    • How could ‘kidnapping’ even stand up if the ‘kidnapped’ let it be known they were where they were by their own decision? Am concerned about Scott. any news?

    • The internet, twitter etc … has connected all of the regular people in a way impossible before now – instant contact. I hope you are correct and the Internet stays free.

  4. With the aid of such movements as Wiki Leaks and the efforts of independents like Snowden and heroic actions by groups like Tar Sands Resistance, it seems we may be experiencing the beginning of a worldwide renaissance of reason over the propaganda of the dominant perspective. A free Internet, no doubt, is a driving force in this evolution.

  5. Oh god, we need much strength to resist these powers that threaten to poison our planet. We need more power to overcome the power structure (government and police) that violates the rights of people. oh god, please help.

  6. Awesome work, ya’ll. We’re all buzzing in Boston today about your action. Hope Fitzgerald Scott is ok. Jaws of Life injuries are no bueno. Keep up the fight, and we’ll keep the music, love, and solidarity coming out of the NE for ya!!

  7. solidarity from a tarsands blockade activist in galveston. i hope you are ok fitzgerald scott. great work by all of you. i only wish i could have come.

  8. We honor those who are arrested protecting the Earth.

    You inspire us to move outside our fear and activate ourselves for the planet we love.

    We have added your images to our Earth Hall of Fame page. I would like to add names of those who were arrested if you send them to me.
    The webpage is: http://www.coalmarch.org/earth-hall-of-fame/

    Keep it up.

    Jim Powers

  9. Pingback: Root Force » Blog Archive » Protesters Shut Down Keystone Pipeline Pump Station

  10. we will stop them from coming on our Lakota lands!!!!!!!! they have no regard for the future of mother earth and the many gallons of water they use. The water they use is toxic after , what are they thinking!!!!!!!!!!! I want to take them to the slapping medicine man.

  11. Just got home from a Fearless Summer event at the KXL pipeline. 8 of us got arrested for locking ourselves down at a construction site in Oklahoma. 2 other people got arrested simply because the police were freaking out.

    This was the largest action yet by the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance and it was met by an escalating ugliness in police actions. Amidst threats of breaking people’s arms, local authorities deliberately inflicted injuries on three demonstrators while extracting them from the construction equipment. Two were treated on site and the third was taken to a local emergency room for treatment, then released. All are doing okay at this point.

    There was a similar escalation in the legal response from the authorities. The initial booking process was dragged out to keep people in jail overnight. The usual charge of trespass, with a $250 bail was raised to obstruction and trespass, with bail set at $1,500. Local bondsmen refused to post bonds for people and an out of county bondsman had to be found. The initial arraignment was postponed, forcing those arrested to return to Oklahoma at a future date and the prosecuting attorney asked for a new bail to be set at $25,000 per demonstrator, lest we all take flight from such heinous misdemeanor charges. Luckily the judge drew the line at that level of silliness and the initial bonds were continued.

    Against that backdrop, there was an incredible level of love and caring from our support community. The arrestees kept a strong, united solidarity as we faced down the official overreactions and outrageousness. The atmosphere in the jail itself was a warm, welcoming one. Some of our female demonstrators were invited to a dance party by the other inmates in their cell block and they spent the evening boogying down. Another demonstrator and I were invited to a bible study with a group of hard case inmates, the real badasses, who were going through a genuine spiritual awakening, right there, in the county lock up. They have been face to face with the corrupt system their whole lives. They understood exactly what we were doing at the pipeline and why, as they themselves had family and friends who’s property had been seized by Trans Canada.

    This event in Oklahoma was a perfect microcosm of the changes sweeping our planet. The resistance is growing everywhere, the transformations are spreading everywhere. People came together from across the country to lock themselves down between the earth and the corporate machines of destruction. Loving care and support was given. The authorities escalated their response with violence and legal shenanigans. Even when being thrown into a rural county jail though, we met allies, new brothers and sisters who are also agents of change in their own right, in their own way.

    The time for sitting on our hands is over. It is now time to take each other’s hands and step forward lovingly to take action together. Be fearless this summer and help to build the new world that is rising in our midst.

  12. Pingback: Construction of Keystone XL pump station shut down in largest action yet by the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance – The Magill Review

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