By Charles Latimer for The Guardian - My first political epiphany concerned the world trade protests in 1999. I was 17 and had a feeling globalisation was a good thing – until I realised it was about money and economics, not people and culture; so in the early 2000s I joined some anti-globalisation protests in Quebec. Several years later, I heard about kayaktivism. I’d kayaked before, and been an activist, but never married the two. My first kayak protest was in Quebec’s Saint Lawrence estuary in 2014. TransCanada wanted to build a supertanker port in a beluga whale nursery. Our mission was to kayak to a boat doing seismic testing, unfurl a banner and take a picture. It wasn’t about stopping the boat, but drawing attention to what was happening. Later that year, though, a group of Pacific islanders took to canoes to block coal ships in Newcastle, Australia, to protest against coal’s impact on climate change; they’d seen coastal erosion and a rise in sea level on their islands. It was largely successful: they were moved on, but delayed a bulk carrier and got a lot of press. That’s when I realised that water-based action could be a great way to protest injustice. I’m now part of a collective of kayaktivists in Vancouver called the Sea Wolves.
By Kevin Zeese for Popular Resistance. The Potomac River Pipeline creates serious environmental risks to the Potomac River and the millions of people downstream who depend on the Potomac for water. Communities in the area of have been protesting the pipeline and escalated with a Kayacktivist action on August 11, 2017. Reporter and photographer for the DC Media Group, Anne Meador, introduces her photo essay on the Kayactivist protest writing on the group's Facebook page: “Kayaktivists” Call On Gov. Hogan To Reject TransCanada Fracked-Gas Pipeline in Protest on the Potomac River Activists paddled down the Potomac with large protest banners, drawing attention to the treasured river under which a proposed pipeline may be constructed. The group called on Governor Larry Hogan to complete the statewide fracking ban by stopping fracked-gas infrastructure and ultimately reject the project.
By David Swanson for World Beyond War - One week before the #NoWar2017: War and the Environment conference, to be held September 22-24 at American Univeristy, World Beyond War will work with the Backbone Campaign and other allies to organize a flotilla for the environment and peace, bringing kayaktivism to Washington, D.C., on September 16th. Why? What’s the relevance? Who’s drilling for oil on the Potomac? Actually the Potomac is central headquarters for oil consumption, as the top way in which we consume oil is through preparing for and waging wars — wars that are often in large part motivated by the desire to control more oil. Behind the Pentagon is a 9/11 memorial, but there’s no memorial to the future Pentagon disaster that will come in the form of flooding. The U.S. military is the top consumer of petroleum around and would rank high by that measure in a list of countries, were it a country. The military is the third worst polluter of U.S. waterways. The United States could convert to entirely sustainable energy for a fraction of the U.S. military budget (and earn it all back in healthcare savings). Most countries on earth have the U.S. military in them. Most countries on earth (the entire countries!) burn less fossil fuel than does the U.S. military.
By Jimmy Betts for We Are Cove Point. In protest of the construction of Dominion’s liquefied natural gas export terminal, dozens of activists and community members held a rally on March 13 on the boardwalk at Solomons Island that was accompanied by a flotilla of kayaks in the Patuxent River. Among those assembled were people fighting LNG export terminals in Texas and Oregon, as well as those fighting fracked gas infrastructure throughout the mid-Atlantic. The action was organized by a coalition of groups that coalesced at the recent Cove Point Spring Break camp, including We Are Cove Point, SEED, the Backbone Campaign and many others. Today’s rally was a message that people won’t stand by as their communities are overrun by corporations looking to make a profit at the expense of our health and well-being.
By Staff for RT - The Arctic-bound vessel got through after police intervened, arresting campaigners. All protesters were eventually lowered into Willamette River by the Coast Guard, Oregon State Police and Portland Fire & Rescue crews and detained for alleged criminal trespassing and interfering with law enforcement, according to reports. After the human blockade was removed and the icebreaker, which is central to Royal Dutch Shell’s plans for extracting oil in the Arctic, began to depart, so-called “kayaktivists” tried to engage the vessel by rowing into its path. Greenpeace claimed the action was a success. “We found that the blockade was successful." Nicole added that the goal is to bring attention to the issue and persuade President Barack Obama to reconsider giving permission to Shell to drill in the Arctic.
By Bill Moyer for the Backbone Campaign - This is HUGE! We're showing the strength of the global uprising that's demanding Climate Justice for all. This battle is NOT over. RIGHT NOW we need as many people to join the #sHellNO BLOCKADE, especially on the water and to also support on land. STOP WHAT YOU ARE DOING AND HEAD TO PORTLAND NOW! It could be only a matter of hours until they attempt to depart again. The courageous climbers and Kayaktivists need masses of people to form a moral shield defending them from the Coast Guard or Shell doing anything that would endanger their lives or safety. Shell's retreat this morning is a welcome victory. Now it is time for our society to retreat from our fossil fuel madness.
Thousands of kayaktivists took to the water on Elliott Bay to protest against Shell's hideous oil drilling rig, The Polar Pioneer on May 16, 2015. People from sHellNo.org, Greenpeace, and other organizations as well as many media outlets from around the US showed up to support and document the huge flotilla event. Zoe Buckley Lennox, a student/volunteer for Greenpeace spoke to the Herald, " My mission is to stop Arctic drilling of course and at the moment I'm here to help shine a light on the fact that Shell has already brought their rigs here and planning on heading up to the Arctic and drilling for oil in the next 60 days, knowing well that there may be a 75 percent chance there might be a massive oil spill if they do go up there and develop."
Since Shell ignore the request of the Port of Seattle to delay their arrival, the Kayactivists participating in the Paddle in Seattle are ready to greet Shell when it comes to Seattle on May 16th. Hundreds of Kayactivists have been trained, the project has already gotten national attention in The New York Times, as well as international news coverage, and the cover of local newspapers, as well as garnering continued coverage from multiple television outlets. It is going to be a highly visible, creative and aggressive action to say sHell No! On Thursday May 14th they are holding their FINAL Kayaktivism Training before the Flotilla. Reserve your kayak & RSVP for the May 16th Paddle In Seattle so we can send you the most up to date information!!! Port of Seattle commissioners asked that Shell’s Arctic drilling rigs delay their arrival at Seattle’s waterfront while the port appeals a city ruling that a new permit is needed. But Foss Maritime expects to move ahead with the planned arrival of the Polar Pioneer on Thursday.
From May 16 to May 18, join us in Seattle for three days of creative, people-powered resistance to Shell and the climate crisis. We will converge on the Seattle waterfront by land and sea, transforming Terminal 5 and Harbor Island into a festival of resistance that will nonviolently block Shell's preparations for Arctic drilling. While we confront Shell, we stand in solidarity with indigenous peoples and people of color who endure the brunt of extraction and climate chaos. We will unite in creative action, including a mass water-based blockade, and an event focused on working to honor our connections with this beautiful and complex planet. These events will build to a day of Mass Direct Action on Monday, May 18, when we will use nonviolent action to SHUT DOWN SHELL and all operations related to their Arctic expedition.