Wednesday, November 30, 2016

NC Pipeline protest

Photo came in an email written by Steven Norris. It was called Robeson Walk, and I do not know who took the photo.


By Steven Norris:

In three North Carolina counties on Saturday, November 19, over 225 people participated in Walks to Protect Our People, Homes, and Lands from the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. Participants in these marches reflected the huge diversity of peoples, races, cultures, and ages of North Carolina, including farmers, students, Afro-Americans, Indigenous people, teachers, Latinos, children, great-grandparents, mothers and home-makers, activists, elders, tradespeople, motorcyclists, people of faith, and even a few folks from out-of state.  

The Atlantic Coast Pipeline is a 550 mile $5 billion fracked gas pipeline which Duke and Dominion propose to build from the sacrificial fracking zones of West Virginia, though Virginia, and then through North Carolina. In North Carolina, which is where the environmental justice movement started and where people are painfully aware that industry and government often target poor people and people of color with projects like this. The proposed route takes the pipeline through some of the poorest counties in the country, some of which also have majority Afro-American populations, and one of which is almost half Lumbee and other native American people.

In Cumberland County, a multiracial group of 75 Afro-Americans, Latinos and whites, walked through Fayetteville's downtown  to the famous meeting house where a spirited, united rally with loud anti-pipeline speeches and chants lasted for over an hour. The Prayer Walk in Robeson County, where more than 100 people participated, started at University of North Carolina Pembroke, and was led by elder and young Lumbee women with prayer flags, escorted by male defender motorcyclists through the rural area to the metering station two miles south of Pembroke. Rallies with drums, songs, prayers and chants were held at the beginning and end of this walk. In Nash County, a diverse group of about 55 people walked for five hours from Red Oak along public roads next to sweet potato, horse and cotton farms. The nine mile route paralleled the proposed pipeline route all the way to steps of the Nash County Courthouse in Nashville, where the downtown for a short time was filled and mesmerized with the noise of chants, speeches and song.

All participants recognized that these Walks were one part of a beginning to the Campaign to protect our people, our water. our homes, and the earth from all further fossil fuel extraction and development, including pipelines. In March 2017 participants are planning to walk the entire 155 mile route of the ACP in N.C., meeting with residents, churches, schools, and community groups along the way.

In North Carolina the need to protect our people, our water and the earth has been driven home recently by the 1000 year floods of Hurricane Mathew in October, which killed almost 30 people and left thousands homeless along the ACP route in eastern North Carolina. Mathew has been followed by an unprecedented drought in the western mountains of the state. The drought has caused multiple devastating forest fires forcing many homeowners to evacuate, and leading to large-scale respiratory problems from smoke-filled valleys over hundreds of square miles.

Below are several news articles from various local and state media.




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