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People over pipelines
Right now, water protectors on the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation are protecting their homeland, their sacred rivers, and the drinking water of 18 million people downstream. With media attention from across the globe, the #NoDAPL movement has ignited a resistance to fossil fuel infrastructure projects - particularly pipelines - all across North America. Below are some of the pipeline projects that activists are working to defeat, where they are located, and how you can learn more about the campaigns and how to get involved:
Florida | Sabal Trail Pipeline
The Sabal Trail Pipeline is part of a 680-mile project carrying fracked gas from eastern Alabama to south Florida. Sabal Trail would connect to a pipeline network that will move one billion cubic feet of Marcellus-sourced gas from Pennsylvania to Florida. The same companies behind the Dakota Access Pipeline recently purchased the company building this pipeline.
As you read this, drilling is close to completion under the Sante Fe River and set to begin under the Suwanee River. These two waterways are at the heart of a region which contains the highest concentration of fresh water springs in the world. In response, Sabal Trail Resistance is organizing on the ground opposition to this fracked gas pipeline. There are currently two full-time encampments in North Florida and the possibility of more to emerge along the route with your support and participation.
Texas | Trans-Pecos pipeline
For more than two years, west Texans have been working to shut down the construction of the Trans-Pecos Pipeline. The pipeline, being built by the same company constructing the Dakota Access Pipeline, will cut through the pristine Big Bend region of Texas and into Mexico. Inspired by the actions at Standing Rock, two local residents recently chained themselves to equipment to stop construction. Previously, water protectors had tried to use legal avenues to stop the pipeline. Since it's being built under the Rio Grande River, the project requires approval by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). Residents tried to petition FERC to reject the permit, but that motion was denied and construction continues.
This pipeline will go through private lands, which have been seized by Energy Transfer Partners through eminent domain. These landowners, who have no say in the matter, are organizing a resistance to this project, which will deliver oil to Mexico. The Facebook group Defend Big Bend provides constant updates and information to share.
Virginia | Mountain Valley Pipeline
The proposed 300-mile Mountain Valley Pipeline would cut through the Appalachian Trail on its way from West Virginia to southern Virginia. It would not only destroy thousands of acres of cherished forest and unique Appalachian Trail views, but also lower the standards for forest management plans and violate the Forest Service's Roadless Rule that prevents road building and other development in the nation's most treasured forests.
Activists are targeting the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's (FERC) Secretary Kimberly Prose, who is still accepting comments on the proposed project. Now is a great time to share your thoughts on a pipeline crossing one of the world's most famous hiking trails!
Other Actions You can take
Track Your Carbon Footprint
Many of the activities that we do every day, including eating, showering, brushing our teeth, driving to school, contribute to the greenhouse gas emissions that are warming our planet and contributing to climate change. As we take steps to cut our carbon footprints and build a sustainable world, we find it important to know how much carbon we are emitting. Calculate your carbon footprint and track your progress using these trackers below:
The Islandwood Ecological footprint calculator is a quick and simple quiz that gives you an idea of your carbon footprint versus the carbon footprint of an average American citizen.
The Nature Conservancy's carbon footprint calculator is a more detailed tracker of your household's carbon footprint. This tracker provides you with a breakdown of your carbon footprint in home energy, driving & flying, food & diet, and recycling & waste.