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View Diary: Open thread for night owls: Why climate change won’t wait for the president (167 comments)

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  •  YES!, We have blogathon next month re bill's WH (34+ / 0-)

    action in mid february to show president obama support for him to say no on XL tar sands pipeline.

    The president must be pressed to do all he can -- and more.  That’s why thousands of us will descend on Washington D.C. on President’s Day weekend, in what will be the largest environmental demonstration in years.
    NASA climate scientist James Hansen has said game over if we exploit the canadian tar sands.

    "It is in the shelter of each other that people live." Irish Proverb

    by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 08:42:48 PM PST

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    •  Huh. Thanks for the reminder; I might (8+ / 0-)

      be able to get out there for that. Although--not terribly carbon-efficient, is it? (Unless I hop a bus....) OTOH, I expect a lot of regional events too.

      Some DKos series & groups worth your while: Black Kos, Native American Netroots, KosAbility, Monday Night Cancer Club. If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

      by peregrine kate on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 08:56:03 PM PST

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    •  Idle No More and Tar Sands (15+ / 0-)

      I hope since this is an open thread and the topic is climate change, it's okay to mention a diary I posted earlier today that also quotes Hansen's bleak prognosis for the planet if the tar sands are developed, and also suggests a feasible way to stop this development: Idle No More: Native Civil Rights, Global Environment, Politics in Canada Largest US Trading Partner

      Our one and only hope of stopping the tar sands and pipelines are Canadian First Peoples. Under the Canadian constitution and international law, they have to be consulted on resource development projects, and they've consistently won in Canadian courts. Last month the Mayor of Vancouver, environmental groups and 130 First Nations reaffirmed the Fraser Declaration that "bans tar sands pipelines and tankers, as a matter of Indigenous law, from First Nations territories forming an unbroken chain from the U.S. border to the Arctic Ocean -- and spanning the entire length of B.C. from north to south.

      Here's a video of an 11-year-old indigenous environmental activist who summarizes the importance of Idle No More, and the relationship of this movement to stopping tar sands development and pipelines, or pipe dreams as she calls them. She ends her speech with the theme of this post: Why climate change won't wait for the President:

      It's so important with Idle No More that we're standing here today, because we're not waiting for our governments to change things, we're not waiting for the authorities to change things any more. Because we know now that if we keep waiting for the next day to come, we're denying the fact that if we keep waiting for change, it's never going to come. We stand united today to put an end to the pipe dreams and to the rights we're being denied. We stand united!
      •  Here she is from navajo and my ... (13+ / 0-)

        ...First Nations News & Views last April:

        Haunting Young Singer Punctuates First Nations
        Pipeline and Oil Tanker Protest
        By navajo and Meteor Blades
        11-year-old singer-protester Ta'Kaiya Blaney in traditional canoe
        Just days after the 23rd anniversary of the infamous Exxon Valdez spill in Alaska, more than 2000 people came out in support of a March 26 rally in Vancouver organized by First Nations people and environmental groups to protest the oil tanker traffic along British Columbia's coastline and proposed pipeline expansion throughout Canada.

        Rain is an eternal presence in the region and did not stop the large crowd from gathering in front of the Vancouver Art Gallery. Many First Nations people turned out in full traditional regalia, perfectly designed to deal with rain. Among the many speakers was famed environmental advocate and climate-change activist Bill McKibben:

        Along with protecting this most beautiful coastline, and along with protecting all the people and other creatures that have been here for so long, you also have the great honor and the great burden of having to help protect the rest of the planet.

        What they want is for British Columbia to be a kind of carbon portal, a kind of carbon gateway for oil and coal ... and we just can’t let that happen. That oil has got to stay in the ground.

        McKibben's reference is to the tar sands oil of Alberta, much in the news in the United States because of opposition to the 1661-mile Keystone XL that builder TransCanada has proposed to deliver the hydrocarbon in those sands, bitumen, in a slurry from Canada to the Texas Gulf coast where most of it will be exported. McKibben and hundreds of other pipeline foes, including many American Indians, were arrested for protests around the White House last summer.

        The Vancouver protesters object to the proposed $5.5 billion (Canadian) Northern Gateway pipeline to be built by Calgary-based Enbridge. It would carry slurry bitumen the 731 miles from Bruderheim, Alta., to Kitimat, British Columbia. The Despite significant financial and other benefits being offered First Nations people, some 60 percent still oppose it on environmental, social and cultural grounds.

        Edwin Newman (Heiltsuk First Nation) one of the main organizers of this event, said, "We are trying to protect a way of life, a way of life that we’ve enjoyed as Heiltsuk people and as coastal people since time immemorial. We’re pleading with our coastal neighbours to stand with us to fight this issue."

        The Heiltsuk, which, with two neighboring First Nations people once populated a large portion of the central coast of British Columbia, are now based at Bella Bella on Campbell Island, 250 miles south-southwest of Kitimat and vulnerable to tanker spills. A Heiltsuk member read a statement in opposition to allowing pipelines and oil tankers passage through their territory.

        The most moving speaker, who actually sang her protest, was Ta'Kaiya Blaney (Sliammon First Nation), an 11-year-old actress, singer and songwriter who performed her song "Shallow Waters" (lyrics) for the crowd. Released in early 2011, the song warns that an oil spill along the northwest coast could end all hope of maintaining traditions for coastal First Nations people. A spill would devastate marine life and coastal habitat. The lyrics and melody are hauntingly beautiful.

        The studio version is here with amazing images and Blaney in her traditional cedar bark regalia. The documentation is very well done. It's had 87,333 views. Her crying voice pleads to our emotions to listen, please listen, and do something.

        Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

        by Meteor Blades on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 11:07:25 PM PST

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        •  Nice voice for such a little one:) Actually a (4+ / 0-)

          little vibrato in there:)

          202-224-3121 to Congress in D.C. USE it! You can tell how big a person is by what it takes to discourage them. "We're not perfect, but they're nuts."--Barney Frank 01/02/2012

          by cany on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 11:36:32 PM PST

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        •  What an amazing voice and presence (4+ / 0-)

          Thanks so much for the video and links, Meteor Blades. I didn't realize Ta'Kaiya was a professional actress, singer and songwriter until I read the site you linked. That explains her remarkable stage presence and eloquence in conveying the spirit and purpose of Idle No More. I hope we'll see more of her as the movement continues to grow.

          Her one-minute summation of attending Rio+20 was the most brilliant and scathing assessment of these endless expensive summits that lead to nothing but pretending the world is doing something so nothing really needs to change. She reminds me of the child finally crying out: But the emperor has no clothes! Then suddenly everyone can finally admit what was right in front of them all along. You're right. All other problems are dwarfed by global warming.

        •  Thanks guys for this and standing up for Bill (0+ / 0-)

          Mckibben and the imperative to do something now about climate change. I attended the Do The Math tour in Boston and although it was depressing to hear how close we are to disaster, the commitment and necessity of action that motivates Bill and all the activists at 350.org keeps me motivated to do everthing I can to push my local lawmakers to take this seriously. We can only get movement from the government by constantly speaking up through protests and petitions and activism
          NOT by putting it on the back burner. The threat of climate change IS an economic, social and jobs issue. We have to solve them together.
          I was discouraged to hear that some Dkos readers think this isn't an important enough issue to keep in the forefront but it won't keep me from speaking out!
          I love your diaries BTW meteor!

    •  Agree -Say NO to XL Tar Sands (7+ / 0-)

      Canadian Natives will NOT let this pipeline cross their land to the Pacific. SO the company is sending it down south! (The company allows for leaks and plans for clean up..........??????? )

      It will take one leak to ruin the Ogallala Aquifer and farming & ranching here in NE.

      People in NE were just given an XL review that only says "nice positives" for the pipeline, but not any neghatives were listed.

      No one listens to those who's land is being taken & are against this plan.

      Reading is for the brain as exercise is for the body.

      by Bateach on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 10:38:34 PM PST

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      •  Does the proposed route cross reservations in NE? (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Puddytat, Wisewood, Ishmaelbychoice

        There have been countless rallies and round dances for Idle No More in the US as well. In Canada, there's growing cooperation between First Nations and environmental groups. Would a similar approach work in NE as worked for BC?

        The best solution to the pipelines would be to stop tar sands development at its source. Idle No More is the first group to push back effectively against Conservative PM Harper. His roots are in Alberta, home of the Canadian oil industry. Think Bush and Texas.

        •  No. The old route was about 100 miles... (4+ / 0-)

          ...east of the Santee reservation in northeast Nebraska. A piece of the new route comes much closer, but still crosses south of the reservation.

          Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

          by Meteor Blades on Sun Jan 06, 2013 at 11:44:20 PM PST

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          •  That's unfortunate (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Ishmaelbychoice

            The solution will have to be stopping tar sands development. Harper already fast-tracked the sale of Nexen's stake in the tar sands to the Chinese state-owned oil company CNOOC. Within a month of that move, he withdrew Canada from Kyoto and passed C-45 to remove protection from over a million lakes and rivers to facilitate pipeline development. 4 out 5 Canadians opposed the Nexen sale, including 57% of Conservative voters, but he plowed ahead anyway. He's moving aggressively and quickly to put all the pieces in place.

            He knows that First Nations are the only legal obstacle to stop this, and that they've already won 160 legal cases related to resources on traditional native lands. One of his next steps is to pass a foreign investment protection act (FIPA) with China. That means legal issues with CNOOC, including those affecting First Nations, will no longer be handled by the courts - where the government is continuously losing - but by a secret trade tribunal. It's a back door to removing the obstacle First Nations present to tar sands and pipeline development. But he's held off on FIPA for now. The public outrage would be immense, particularly with Idle No More growing.

            •  Well, screwing First Nations people... (3+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              navajo, blueoasis, SilentNoMore

              ...has a five-century-long history in the "New World," so if he goes the way you describe, he's not exactly treading new ground.

              Don't tell me what you believe, show me what you do and I will tell you what you believe.

              by Meteor Blades on Mon Jan 07, 2013 at 12:53:19 AM PST

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              •  Tar Sands Pollution Report (0+ / 0-)

                Let's hope Idle No More treads some new ground instead.

                This article on tar sands pollution just came out today. It confirms exactly what the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation has been saying about health effects escalating over 40 years, while being told "the contaminants were naturally occurring."

                The peer-reviewed study, published Monday by a research team including Environment Canada scientists, showed pollution, though it remains low, is as much as 23 times higher than predevelopment levels 50 years ago, extending as far as 90 kilometres from industrial development and rising.

                In particular, researchers found levels of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) have risen roughly at the same pace as development in six nearby lakes. PAHs are a category of toxic chemical compounds that are suspected carcinogens and are linked to infertility, immune disorders and fish mutation.

                Critically, development and pollution are increasing, said John Smol, a Queen’s University professor, Canada Research Chair in Environmental Change and study co-author. “You only have to start doing some back-of-the-envelope calculations of, in 15 years, where they might be,” he said.

                Saw today that First Nations are planning legal action to delay the FIPA bill with China mentioned in my comment above.
        •  Harper... (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          SilentNoMore

          ... has made his home in Calgary but the claim that his roots are here, is kinda thin.  He did move to Alberta as an adult.

          But, that's just academic.  ;)

          There be no shelter, here. The front line is everywhere.

          by Wisewood on Mon Jan 07, 2013 at 02:14:41 AM PST

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          •  Calgary (0+ / 0-)

            Thanks, didn't know that Harper was originally from Toronto. Reminds me of a Walrus article about Harper's chief advisor Tom Flanagan which noted he and many other members of  the neo-con Calgary School weren't originally from Calgary. Now I learn from you Harper wasn't either. Good article and also details Flanagan's assimilationist views which led to Idle No More.

    •  We should have ... (0+ / 0-)

      a 'mini'-blogathon for alternative paths to addressing climate change in the SOTU.

      Here is something that I did a month ago. This was not "SOTU" but a scenario where Obama goes 'off speech', in the middle of the SOTU, to speak emotionally re climate issues but the WH is issuing executive orders as he speaks ...

      Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart NOW! for a sustainable energy future.

      by A Siegel on Mon Jan 07, 2013 at 03:58:06 AM PST

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    •  Could you tell me more? (1+ / 0-)

      I'm still fairly new here, although I've been a dkos reader for a few years. I'm a member in the 350.org movement and just saw Bill in Boston recently. It would be awesome to attend the action next month but workwise just not doable for me.
      Thanks for the informative comments too, its good to see there are so many like-minded people here!

      •  what would you like to know? (0+ / 0-)

        welcome to DK. :)

        "It is in the shelter of each other that people live." Irish Proverb

        by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse on Mon Jan 07, 2013 at 09:43:06 PM PST

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        •  Tell me more about the blog (0+ / 0-)

          That is planned to coincide with McKibben's action in DC!
          I'm a timid blogger, never really sure about what to say even when I feel strongly about something cuz I don't think anyone cares what my opinion is. I want to get over that! Dkos is a great forum for learning to speak up and learning about issues that many others, like me care about.

          •  we're doing a blogathon next month (0+ / 0-)

            on xl tar sands pipeline. we will have special guests and dk bloggers. usually special guests include lawmakers, political activists, journalists, political leaders. we had vp al gore few months ago and van jones! this time, don't think gonna invite lawmakers. will focus on political activists and leaders.

            "It is in the shelter of each other that people live." Irish Proverb

            by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse on Tue Jan 08, 2013 at 09:05:45 PM PST

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