Defend Our Climate, Defend Our Communities Actions
Thousands across the Canada step up against Pipelines, dirty oil and climate change.
Thousands across the country are stepping up to help create a better future and defend our communities against pipelines, dirty oil projects and runaway climate change. Close to 100 events are taking place from coast to coast as part of the Defend our Climate, Defend Our Communities – National Day of Action.
“From Enbridge’s proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline to Keystone XL, Kinder Morgan, Line 9 and Energy East to ongoing tar sands expansion, there are many decisions looming on pipelines and extreme energy projects all across the country”, says Eriel Deranger of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nations. “If built, these projects will allow the continued polluting of water, threaten communities and treaty rights, and accelerate climate change with significant impacts on all regions across Canada.”
“This government has shut climate out of the conversation. Canadians can’t talk about it in the environmental assessments of pipelines, mines, or insitu projects. The Prime Minister has silenced scientists and closed the national round table on environment and economy,” says Jamie Biggar from Leadnow.ca. “People are stepping up across Canada to talk with each other and call for a clean, just, and fair climate strategy.”
Close to 100 grassroots groups including First Nations, youth, and concerned Canadians from all walks of life, are organizing and participating in events such as walks, rallies and concerts as part of the Defend Our Climate, Defend our Communities – National Day of Action.
“There is a diverse movement of people across the country working together to defend our climate and our communities by pushing for a shift to a just, safe and clean energy future,” says Alain Brunel of Association québécoise de lutte contre la pollution atmosphérique in Montreal. “Together, we are calling on all politicians to commit to cap extreme energy, reduce climate pollution and transition off fossil fuels for good.”
“Kenora citizens are adding their voice to the national call to defend our climate and communities, especially now that we are at risk from the proposed Energy East pipeline” says Teika Newton of the Transition Initiative Kenora, referring to TransCanada’s plans to retrofit a pipeline that runs through the town to carry tar sands oil. “This pipeline would put our town, our water, and our climate at risk.”
There are numerous coal, fracking and tar sands development projects being pushed by government and industry in Canada including 6 pipelines: Energy East, Line 9, and the Great Lakes pipelines cross most of Canada’s population’s drinking water on their way to the East Coast; Kinder Morgan and Enbridge Northern Gateway will dramatically increase oil tanker traffic on British Columbia’s coast, and Keystone XL runs from Saskatchewan through the heartland of the US. Not only do they carry heavy highly corrosive bitumen mixed with toxic chemicals that will have devastating health and environmental impacts in the event of a spill, they are projects that lock us into a fossil fuel dependent, dead-end economy while enabling tar sands growth that will destabilize our planet’s climate.
The Canadian Day of Action will be followed by a US Day of Action on May 17.
Defend Our Climate thanks all who participated!
We are totally blown away by the great photos, media coverage and stories that came in from nearly 100 actions across the country.
You’ve helped connect this movement and kick off a crucial year. People power made these rallies bigger, more diverse and more inspiring than we could have possibly imagined, and people power is going to create a safe, just and clean energy future for Canada.
- See this flickr album to see photos from all across Canada
- We’ll be collecting media coverage for days, check back for an update with a full list.
- And keep reading this blog for coverage of many of today’s events.
For now, we need your help to ask as many people as possible to help build a movement that can defend our climate by shifting to a clean, local and just energy future. If you haven’t yet, please sign the Safe Climate and Communities pledge to stay in the loop for the next steps.