National protests will support Hamilton Enbridge activists
Protestors from across the country will take to the streets in nearly a dozen cities tomorrow in support of activists who took over an Enbridge Inc. pumping station in Hamilton last week.
The action, titled "Swamp Line 9," is in protest of the Line 9 pipeline that runs from Montreal to Sarnia. Enbridge is seeking to reverse the direction of the pipeline in a bid to send tar sands oil from Alberta to the east coast. The protesters moved on to the North Westover site on June 20.
"It’s important to show people in the struggle out east that there are people in Alberta that are happy with what they’re doing," said Chelsea Flook.
Flook’s Sierra Club Prairie Chapter will be hosting a local solidarity action in Edmonton.
"At the same time, it’s locally important to show Edmontonians that people are united across Canada against tar sands expansions and they are raising their voices," she added.
The National Energy Board has already approved the first leg of the project, with public hearings on the second leg scheduled for the fall. Enbridge has already began construction on the project.
"These communities along the route are giving voice to their concerns. They have a right to say no," said Maryam Adrangi, spokesperson for the Rising Tide’s Vancouver chapter.
"They’re saying that we care about the land we live on, the water we drink and the air we breathe — they’re incredibly legitimate concerns," Adrangi said.
Line 9 crosses several major rivers that drain into Lake Ontario and the St. Lawrence River as well as Spencer Creek, Hamilton’s largest watershed.
Protestors say that the drinking water of millions of people would be at risk in the event of an oil spill.
The protest is part of "Sovereignty Summer," a series of protest actions promoting Indigenous rights and environmental protection led by Idle No More and Defenders of the Land.
Enbridge told CBC Hamilton last week that the company is willing to listen to concerns.
"We are willing to speak with these individuals about their concerns," said Ken Hall, a senior advisor for community relations. "I'm sure we can try to resolve this in due course"