Activists, all over 50 years old, this morning, October 11, 2016, claim to have entirely stopped the flow of tar sands oil from Canada into the United States by manually shutting down the flow of five pipelines in the United States.
Under the banner of #ShutItDown (www.shutitdown.today), the group said in a press release today that the actions are “in support of the call for International Days of Prayer and Action for Standing Rock”, where a massive Indigenous resistance against the Dakota Access Pipeline (#DAPL) has formed.
#ShutItDown is also “calling on President Obama to use emergency powers to keep the pipelines closed and mobilize for the extraordinary shift away from fossil fuels now required to avert catastrophe.”
Pipelines were shut down, according to the group, in these locations:
Minnesota (Enbridge line 4 and 67), North Dakota (TransCanada’s Keystone pipeline), Montana (Spectra Energy’s Express pipeline), and Washington State (Kinder-Morgan’s Trans-Mountain pipeline).
The actions are reminiscent of high-profile activist shut-downs of Enbridge's Line 9 tar sands pipeline in Quebec and in Ontario in December 2015, and of a similar though anonymous shut-down in Ontario in January 2016.
One of the activists today, 59-year old Ken Ward from Oregon, who was arrested, said this of the action: “There is no plan of action, policy or strategy being advanced now by any political leader or environmental organization playing by the rules that does anything but acquiesce to ruin. Our only hope is to step outside polite conversation and put our bodies in the way. We must shut it down, starting with the most immediate threats — oil sands fuels and coal.”
See video posted by the activists themselves: