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It has been over 20 years since I helped lead the Clayoquot Sound blockades against old growth logging. Should our federal government approve the Kinder Morgan pipeline and the 700 per cent increase in tankers going out to the Salish sea, I will dust off my civil disobedience organizing tools to stop this crime against humanity and the environment from happening.

There are catalytic moments like these in history. They are relatively rare occurrences. They happen when an old way of thinking, backed by entrenched powers, tries desperately to persist, even though society’s thinking on the issue has already changed. Clayoquot in 1993 was one of those moments. I felt it also during the 2014 Burnaby Mountain protests against Kinder Morgan’s pipeline. I know from experience that we cannot manufacture these uprisings, but we can feel them building. The tension over the Kinder Morgan pipeline is palpable in communities who are ready to move away from a fossil fueled climate disaster fast.

The economy is an outcome of our imagination. The earth is not. The options to adjust and develop the economy along better lines is our purview. Adjusting runaway climate change and re-inventing species is not.

I have had the unfortunate experience of trying to clean up an oil spill – the Nestucca Bunker C spill in 1988 washed up along the west coast of Vancouver Island. While the provincial and federal governments dithered, arguing over who’s jurisdiction the clean-up belonged to, 2,000 people from First Nations communities, coastal villages and volunteers worked in cold driving rain. We shoveled tarry oil into garbage bags, hauled it on our backs above the high tide line and found hundreds of dead animals – blobs of oil with a foot or heading protruding. We converted the Friends of Clayqout Sound office into an animal rescue hospital. We fed and billeted volunteers, took time off work in a desperate race against time as the oil broke into smaller bits and was buried in the sand and the driftwood. I wish this experience on no one.

Oiled bird off Vancouver Island during Nestucca spill. Photo from July 2015 report to NEB

Of the 231,000 gallons of Bunker C tarry oil spilled, a fraction (278 tonnes of oily sand and debris) was recovered. Volunteers brought in 13,000 oiled birds. Only 1000 survived. Two months later no-one remembered the Nestucca spill. It was eclipsed by the horror of the Exxon Valdez. An oil spill is destructive. Burning that oil in its intended destination is causing human and ecological disruption writ large.

The 1948 Genocide Convention enjoined the international community to intervene to prevent crimes against humanity. It does does not limit responsibility to not committing this crime – it requires that we intervene to prevent it. The effects of Climate change is nothing less than a crime against humanity. Those entrusted with responsibility in these matters – the Kinder Morgan public hearing panel, corporate and government decision makers - have a higher international obligation than the economic benefit of a region or a company. They must intervene to prevent a crime that is already unfolding – in drowning Pacific Islands and Baton Rouge, in outrageous temperatures that humans can’t survive in India, France and Australia and even in the fires that burned through Fort McMurray.

As a person with experience in organizing civil disobedience I commit to help organize peaceful resistance, as a duty I am obligated under international Convention to do, should a decision be made, against all sense, to approve the Kinder Morgan pipeline.

I am sure I will not be alone.

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This excellent appraisal captures where the human race now stands. It should be compulsory reading in this country for every politician, every civil servant, and every corporate executive. To ignore the messages within this article would, figuratively speaking, be the equivalent of kicking the hornet's nest.

Couldn't agree more. In Alberta, we are cursed with dealing with the results of oil and gas extraction. Horizontal fracking has made our lives a nightmare, and threatens future generations as well. All Canadians need to wake up to the damage this does to human health, air, water and the structure of the earth itself.

My husband and I decided to stand with native Americans, farmers and ranchers in defence of the Oglalla aquifer, against TransCanada. What began as a symbolic message to our grandchildren has led us to learn much about where we are as a people and a planet.

We will do our best to rise with the people committed to defending our coastlines, rivers and sacred landscape against pipe dreams that have no future, and that will be built at the expense of the people who live along their pathways.

It does our hearts good to hear that we are not alone. We've come to a point in our history where really we have no choice. If we the people stay docile and quiet, these fantasists and extractivists are going to tank the planet.

Time for a new Plan.

The brainwashing that human primate animals are somehow "special" and not part of the animal family has led to destroying much of the planet and billions still deceive themselves that either the climate isn't changing or that it won't affect them. That clean water is only a basic right for humans and Speciecide defaults back to genocide, which again refers to humans, speaks volumes about how lawmakers regard any other species. If clean air and water was the basic right of all species, along with their right to live in ecosystems undisturbed by humans, we would all be much better off. That is what I fight for.