This inspiring ten-minute film captures the grassroots energy and diverse composition of the movement against the Keystone XL, a 1,700-mile pipeline that would transport tar sands oil from Alberta, Canada across the United States for refinement and export on the Gulf Coast.
The Tar Sands, also known as the oil sands, are one of the largest remaining deposits of oil in the world, and efforts to extract the resource from a mix of clay and other materials underneath Canada’s Boreal forest have created the biggest, and by the accounts of numerous scientists and environmental groups, the most environmentally devastating, energy project on earth. For details and background, the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) has compiled an extensive document that challenges many of the claims made by TransCanada and the US State Department about tough regulatory oversight of the project.
Environmental leader and writer Bill McKibben narrates the film and explains how the 1,263 people who took arrests over the course of a few weeks in the late summer in Washington, DC, transformed what was a regional issue that hadn’t attracted the notice it deserved into a national and a global issue commanding attention. This is the inspiring part and demonstrates anew the continued relevance of nonviolent civil disobedience.
The next step will take place on November 6 in Washington, DC, where thousands of concerned citizens, your blogger among them, will gather to implore President Obama to say no to the pipeline and attempt a symbolically powerful encircling of the White House. Get more info on the November 6 action; dig into research about the Tar Sands; join the Tar Sands Action Facebook page for updates; organize a Tar Sands event in your community, and donate directly to the cause of stopping the pipeline.