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Expect More Resistance: Direct Action Targets Tar Sands as #FearlessSummer Kicks Off

9 arrests following action that thwarted construction of a tar sands pump station

- Andrea Germanos, staff writer

Activists locked to an excavator to thwart construction work. (Photo: Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance)Nine people with Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance (GPTSR) have been arrested on Monday after succeeding in temporarily shutting down construction of a Keystone XL pump station.

The action in Seminole, Okla. was part of a series of coordinated, nationwide #FearlessSummer actions starting this week that aim to fight "extreme energy," which "continues to escalate its attack of life on earth."

For GPTSR, the direct action was a necessary step to confront the fossil fuel industries that "profit off of continued ecological devastation and the poisoning of countless communities."

“As a part of a direct action coalition working and living in an area that has been historically sacrificed for the benefit of petroleum infrastructure and industry, we believe that building a movement that can resist all infrastructure expansion at the point of construction is a necessity," Eric Whelan, spokesperson for the group, said in a statement.

“We’re through with appealing to a broken political system that has consistently sacrificed human and nonhuman communities for the benefit of industry and capital,” added Whelan

While Monday's action targeted TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline, the group emphasized that "tar sands infrastructure is toxic regardless of the corporation or pipeline," and pointed to spills in the Kalamazoo River in Michigan and in Mayflower, Arkansas.

"We are opposed not only to the Keystone XL, but all tar sands infrastructure that threatens the land and her progeny,” stated Fitzgerald Scott, who took part in Monday's action.

So the group's message to Enbridge, another heavyweight in the rapacious industry, is this: expect resistance.

“While KXL opponents wait with baited breath for Obama’s final decision regarding this particular pipeline, other corporations, including Enbridge, will be laying several tar sands pipelines across the continent. The Enbridge pipelines will carry the same volumes of the same noxious substance; therefore, Enbridge should get ready for the same resistance.”

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