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This is what real democracy looks like, not some cooked-up version sponsored by lobbyists, fake grassroots groups, and Big Oil.  Citizens from all walks of life - environmental activists, Native American leaders, farmers, religious leaders, and average members of the local community - are petitioning their government to do something in their own interests.  It is quite uplifting to know that there are many people in the country whose lives are not primarily motivated by unlimited greed and obscene profits.  How quaint an idea!

All of them are fiercely opposing the construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline.  The arguments being made are rational, passionate, and, yet, very respectful. You can watch it live online.

Note: Reading the diary comments will give you a good flavor of what was said by several petitioners.  When the hearing ended after Midnight, the announcer said that the entire 12 hour program will be archived.  I'm assuming it will be done overnight.  Again, the link is NetNebraska.org, Nebraska's NPR and PBS stations.


Update #1
Once this hearing is over, this will be the reaction from TransCanada.  Count on oil companies to dismiss anything that impedes their money-making capabilities, community disruptions or environmental concerns be damned!

Update #2
In response to this comment by Maverick80229, the three persons comprising the panel are officials from the US Department of State, per the Lincoln Journal Star.  I do not know their names or titles.  Perhaps someone else does.

Hundreds speak at Keystone XL hearing

Randy Thompson, prominent member of the pipeline opposition from Martell, was among the first to address the three-member State Department panel.

Thompson thanked them for coming.

“Because, after all, we are among those with the most to lose and the least to gain from Keystone XL.”

Thompson said he looks forward to Obama choosing a victor.

“The question is this.  Is he raising the heavy hand of big oil or is he going to raise the hand and the spirits of the American people?”

Update #3
A couple of minutes ago, one of the speakers turned the tables on Secretary of State John Kerry and referred to his famous statement by asking if indeed the planet was going to die for our mistakes.  I'm paraphrasing, but the below graphic will also give you an idea what a young soldier returning home from the Vietnam War might have said over four decades ago.

This is definitely one of the best public hearings I've seen in years.  Couldn't our United States Congress be as transparent as this?  They owe us at least as much.

Source: Fast For The Earth

Please also rec the below diary posted this afternoon. Discussion of this hearing is taking place in it:

"Freedom of Expression" is one of the four paintings by Norman Rockwell inspired by FDR's 1941 State of the Union Speech, commonly known in history as the "Four Freedoms" speech.

#NOKXL Blogathon: April 12 - April 22, 2013



860,000 Comments Submitted!

As of today, around 860,000 comments have been submitted so far and forwarded by our coalition partners to the United States Department of State.  Please help us reach and, even, exceed our goal of one million comments opposing this pipeline.  

The deadline for submission of public comments is April 22, 2013.

You Can Make a Difference

On March 1, 2013, the United States State Department released a Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) for the Presidential Permit application for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.  The SEIS evaluates the potential environmental impacts. The purpose of this campaign is to obtain one million public comments in opposition to building this environmentally-destructive pipeline.  We hope that this blogathon will make submission of public comments easier.

This effort is being coordinated with Bill McKibben of 350.org and in coalition with the Sierra Club, National Wildlife Federation, League of Conservation Voters, Natural Resources Defense Council, Oil Change International, and Bold Nebraska.  


A victim of the recent tar sands oil spill in Mayflower, Arkansas, this bird says it all.  
Photograph being used with permission from Fast For The Earth.

We have an exciting line up of prominent lawmakers, environmental activists, and Daily Kos diarists.  Each one of them will be posting a diary in opposition to the Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline. Some guests will be including a brief "sample comment" that readers can copy and submit at the State Department website.  The diaries and "sample comments" can be used as your comments! Readers who have specialized knowledge and skills relating to the pipeline, tar sands, climate change, or the petroleum industry may, of course, choose to create their own comments with additional details.  

Comments written by you are reviewed by our government with no media filter.  Three of our coalition partners will keep track of the number of comments submitted to the U.S. Department of State.

Please submit your comments through one of the below links:

  • "A Million Comments Against Keystone XL" - 350.org will deliver your comments directly to the State Department and has a system set up so that you can customize your comment.
  • "Tell President Obama: Reject Keystone XL!" - Sierra Club has a sample public comment that allows you to personalize your message.
  • "Tell the State Department: #NoKXL" - Oil Change International has a very helpful template to formulate your comments.
Let your voice be heard.  Our Daily Kos community organizers are Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse, boatsie, rb137, JekyllnHyde, Onomastic, citisven, peregrine kate, DWG, and John Crapper, with Meteor Blades as the group's adviser.

Diary Schedule - All Times Pacific

More helpful details are in this diary - DK Blogathon Hosts Eco Coalition in #NOKXL Public Comment Campaign by Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse.  Use hashtag #NOKXL to tweet all diaries posted during this blogathon.

  • Friday, April 12

1:00 pm: #NOKXL Blogathon: Your voice on the Keystone XL pipeline matters by DWG.
3:00 pm: Daniel Kessler, Media Campaigner for 350.org. (will be rescheduled)

  • Saturday, April 13

11:00 am: Keystone XL: a pipeline THROUGH the US, not to it by dturnbull, Campaigns Director of Oil Change International.
1:00 pm: #NOKXL: Dilbit in the Pipeline by Agathena.

  • Sunday, April 14

11:00 am: Keystone XL: Wildlife in the Crosshairs by Target Global Warming, Peter LaFontaine is the Energy Policy Advocate for the National Wildlife Federation.
1:00 pm: #NoKXL: The Future Is In Our Hands; Say No To The XL Pipeline Disaster by beach babe in fl.
3:00 pm: #NoKXL: Guess What's NOT in POTUS' Budget! (Rhymes with Shnipeline) by ericlewis0.

  • Monday, April 15

Note: All diaries for this day were rescheduled due to the Boston Marathon bombings.

  • Tuesday, April 16

8:00 am: KXL will carry as much carbon as all the cars on the West Coast, plus Michigan, NY, and Florida. by Bill McKibben, Founder of 350.org.
12:00 pm: #NoKXL: InsideClimate News Wins Pulitzer for Coverage of Kalamazoo River Dilbit Spill in 2010 by peregrine kate.
2:00 pm: Reject Keystone XL; Our Focus Should Be on Investing in a Sustainable Energy Future by Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA13), Member of the United States House of Representatives.
2:00 pm: #NoKXL: (un)Ethical Pipeline? by A Siegel.
3:00 pm: #NoKXL — The Pipeline To Oblivion: Memes From The Climate Letter Project by WarrenS.

  • Wednesday, April 17

11:00 am: My government doesn't believe in climate change by Tzeporah Berman, Canadian Environmentalist and Co-Founder of Forest Ethics.
1:00 pm: Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Member of the United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works. (will be rescheduled)
3:00 pm: #NoKXL ?? The Keystone XL Pipeline, Deep Time, and the Nature of Humanity by gregladen.

  • Thursday, April 18

10:00 am: Keystone East: Doubling down? Or admitting KXL defeat? by Roger Fox.
1:00 pm: Jane Kleeb, Executive Director of Bold Nebraska, Live Blogging from the Final KXL Pipeline Public Hearing in Nebraska. (will post a bit later)
2:00 pm: Watch it Now! Fantastic Live Hearing Opposing Keystone XL Pipeline from Nebraska by JekyllnHyde.
3:00 pm: #NOKXL: The Ill-Logic of Keystone XL by Kelly Rigg, Executive Director of the Global Call for Climate Action.


Please remember to republish these diaries to your Daily Kos Groups.  You can also follow all postings by clicking this link for the Climate Change SOS Blogathon Group. Then, click 'Follow' and that will make all postings show up in 'My Stream' of your Daily Kos page.

Originally posted to Climate Change SOS on Thu Apr 18, 2013 at 02:24 PM PDT.

Also republished by DK GreenRoots, Kosowatt, Climate Hawks, Meatless Advocates Meetup, Holy $h*tters, and Progressive Policy Zone.

Poll

Have You Sent Your Comment(s) to the US State Department?

23%17 votes
47%34 votes
19%14 votes
5%4 votes
2%2 votes

| 71 votes | Vote | Results

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