From northern Minnesota to the metro area, protesters have mobilized this week against the construction of the Line 3 oil sands pipeline. The movement is led by Indigenous women; they emphasize the pipeline violates agreements upholding the Anishinaabe people’s rights to fish, hunt and gather on treaty-protected land.
Tiffany Bui reports:
From northern Minnesota to the metro area, protesters have mobilized this week against the construction of the Line 3 oil sands pipeline. The proposed pipeline expansion by Canadian company Enbridge would cross treaty-protected land. Activists say the pipeline poses an environmental risk to numerous bodies of water.
On Thursday, over 120 protesters gathered in Gold Medal Park in Minneapolis to show solidarity with their northern counterparts. Winona LaDuke, director of Honor the Earth, spoke at the rally after weeks of camping with other activists at Shell City Campground.
“I don’t feel like our water, our land should go to a Canadian multinational trying to make a buck at the end of the fossil fuel era,” said LaDuke. “That’s not right. That’s not right.”
The protesters main goal was to pressure state Senator Amy Klobuchar to denounce the pipeline. Speakers at the rally want Klobuchar to help convince the Biden administration to halt Line 3, just as it did the Keystone XL pipeline.
Demonstrators linked the protests to Line 3 to other social justice movements. Beatrice Ogeh says she’s concerned about the influx of male pipeline workers to areas where Indigenous women live on tribal reservations.
“These pipelines really perpetuate a lot of sexual assault against Indigenous people. These man camps … put a lot of the women at risk,” said Ogeh.
A coalition of groups called Treaty People Gathering have set up camp in northern Minnesota to resist pipeline construction. Some have even chained themselves to the construction equipment. Activists say this was their biggest move yet against the pipeline, with 2000 protesters attending and nearly 200 arrested.
The movement is led by Indigenous women; they emphasize the pipeline violates agreements upholding the Anishinaabe people’s rights to fish, hunt and gather on treaty-protected land.
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