Press Release — March 24, 2017

Members of The Peoples Climate Mobilization Condemn Trump Administration Decision to Greenlight KXL

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, March 24, 2017
Contact: Paige Knappenberger, pknappenberger@climatenexus.org


This statement and call to action has been initiated by member groups of the Peoples Climate Movement national steering committee. Those groups are listed below.

WASHINGTON, DC — Members of The Peoples Climate Movement (PCM) are  disappointed that the Trump administration has decided to move forward with the Keystone XL pipeline. This costly project is massively unpopular across the country, and is a direct affront to our climate and communities. On April 29th we’re calling on everyone who opposes the Keystone pipeline, and President Trump’s other damaging decisions, to join us in Washington, D.C. to March for Climate, Jobs and Justice. Together, we will push back against the administration’s attacks and put forward our vision of a renewable energy economy that works for all.

The Keystone XL pipeline crosses the Ogallala Aquifer, so a spill could spoil the drinking water of millions of Americans. On the heels of Trump’s decision to let the Dakota Access Pipeline go forward, President Trump is once again showing that he does not understand the importance of clean air and water,  respect people’s property rights, or grasp the severity of the threat climate change poses to Americans health and future prosperity. Pursuing new fossil fuel extraction developments will only make climate change worse.

The Peoples Climate Movement represents millions of Americans committed to keeping emissions down and protecting our waterways from oil spills. Today, members will join protests in DC, New York and across the country at 5pm to let the administration know that these decisions will not stand. We’re heartened by the overwhelming response of opposition from groups nationwide and stand in solidarity with the protests planned today by those activists.

This statement is supported by the following PCM Steering Committee member organizations; 350.org, Center for Biological Diversity, Center for Popular Democracy, PCM-NY, Natural Resource Defense Council (NRDC), Climate Justice Alliance, Public Citizen, Alliance for Climate Education (ACE), Greenfaith, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, Earthjustice, Public Citizen, Franciscan Action Network, Indigenous Environmental Network, Resource Generation, The Climate Reality Project, WE ACT for Environmental Justice, Labor Network for Sustainability, Green For All, Power Shift Network, and Sierra Club


The following quotes can be attributed to steering committee members of the Peoples Climate Movement:

Tom BK Goldtooth, Executive Director, Indigenous Environmental Network:
“President Trump’s decision approving the permit for the Keystone XL pipeline is another act of aggression against the sovereignty of numerous tribal governments along the proposed pipeline route. This act of the US government shows a clear disregard of our tribal rights to consent, self-determination and responsibilities as caretakers for water of life and Mother Earth. We’ve stopped the KXL pipeline once, and we will do it again. Native nations stand united not just here in the US, but around the world. The April 29 March for Climate, Jobs and Justice is a movement moment for humanity to stand together to demand climate justice.”

Dr. Adrienne Hollis, Director of Federal Policy at WE ACT for Environmental Justice:
“With a few strokes of a pen, Donald Trump has committed our planet to climate catastrophe. His approval of the Keystone XL pipeline will put billions at risk from climate change, and threaten public health. While we know that few permanent jobs will be created through the construction of this pipeline, Trump’s administration has falsely toted this as a jobs creator. It is not the magic jobs bullet we need during our current global climate crisis.  WE ACT continues to stand with all communities in their fight against the pipeline and resistance to polluting, corporate control of their land.“

Angela Adrar, Executive Director, Climate Justice Alliance
“Trump’s threats to our communities dangerously mounts with his recent decision on the Keystone Pipeline. His Administration is determined to put forth short-sighted and false solutions that accelerate an extractive fossil fuel economy that has violated Native Treaties, targeted vulnerable communities, and amplifies a wedge between jobs and environmental justice we can not afford and will not stand for.”

Elizabeth Yeampierre, Executive Director of UPROSE
“The Trump administration’s decision to approve the Keystone XL pipeline does nothing to deter us as members of the climate justice movement in our mission to rapidly shift towards a generative economy. This will swell our numbers, push more of us into the streets, and deepen our commitment to our children, our communities, and our climate. Our aggressive efforts to operationalize Just Transitions at local and national levels will outpace the brutality and injustice this administration is intent on implementing. While we condemn this decision wholeheartedly, it only reinforces our unstoppable momentum towards establishing a livable climate and sustainable economy.”

Aura Vasquez, Director of Climate Justice. Center for Popular Democracy:
“At a time when decisive action on climate change is urgently needed, the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline would make the problem of carbon pollution worse, impacting millions of people of color already most affected by climate pollution. This is not the time to bring back this pipeline, but to act on solutions that can helps us move away from fossil fuel and benefit those most vulnerable to climate change and the pollution causing it.”

Iimay Ho, Executive Director, Resource Generation:
“Trump’s approval of the Keystone XL pipeline is a continuation of the U.S.’s racist economic policies of enriching the wealthy at the expense of indigenous communities, water, and our planet. The first massive wealth accumulation on this land was only possible because of the genocide of indigenous people and the enslavement of Africans and then African-Americans. As a membership organization of young people with access to financial wealth, we are committed to standing with poor and working class communities and communities of color fighting for a sustainable future for all of us. We’ll be at the March for Climate, Jobs, and Justice because we want a political system that protects our communities, not our financial wealth.”

May Boeve, Executive Director, 350.org:
“The people beat this pipeline once before and we will beat it again. The March for Climate, Jobs and Justice is a chance for all of us to stand together and reject the Trump Administration’s attacks on our climate and put forward the vision of a clean energy economy that works for all. Hundreds of thousands of Americans have taken to the streets to protest Keystone XL and defend our climate. Now, it’s time to march again.”

Rev. Fletcher Harper, Executive Director, GreenFaith:
“The Earth, God’s creation, is our common home.  It is our job to care for and protect it.  This pipeline, and other new fossil fuel infrastructure projects, are morally unjustifiable.  The March for Climate, Jobs and Justice represents a chance for us to come together for a truly sustainable future, with good jobs, clean air and a safe climate for all people.”

Tom Steyer, President, NextGen Climate:
“Keystone XL is good for oil companies and Russia, but bad for America. Clean energy would create many more jobs for American workers and put us on a path to a cleaner and more prosperous future.”

Rhea Suh, President, Natural Resources Defense Council:
“Keystone XL is all risk and no reward. It remains, and always will be, a threat to our land, water and climate, from Canada, to the heartland, to the Gulf of Mexico, and beyond. On April 29th, 100 days into the new administration’s all-out assault on our values, our communities will stand united in resistance to Trump at the Peoples Climate March. Together, in solidarity with our allies that live on the frontlines of climate destruction, we will march for a more just future for all.”

Kierán Suckling, Executive Director, Center for Biological Diversity:
“The Keystone XL pipeline is a disaster for people, wildlife and the planet. Donald Trump only cares about making his special interest pals richer even though our children will inherit a world ravaged by climate change. We will use every tool we have to fight this pipeline from the courts to the streets.”

Vien Truong, National Director of Green For All:
“The Keystone XL Pipeline hurts communities of color first and worst — from indigenous communities along the route to Latino communities living near Texas refineries who will bear the burden of processing, to black and brown communities across the country suffering the worst effects of extreme weather from climate change. That Trump would put his billionaire friends ahead of the health and wealth of black and brown Americans is unspeakable. But the fight doesn’t end here — the people will defeat this pipeline.”

Ken Berlin, President and CEO of The Climate Reality Project:
“The Trump administration’s decision to greenlight the Keystone XL pipeline is shortsighted and dangerous. Hundreds of thousands of Americans have repeatedly and vocally expressed opposition to this project because of the potential damage to the climate, potential water pollution, impact on farmers, and the fact that tar sands are already an uneconomic source of energy. This may be a setback, but The Climate Reality Project will be joining the March for Climate, Jobs, and Justice to continue to make the voices of Americans heard in this fight against the dirty fossil fuels driving the climate crisis.”

Patrick Carolan, Executive Director, Franciscan Action Network:
“In Laudato Si, Pope Francis reminds us that we have a responsibility to care for our earth and for our sisters and brothers most impacted by climate degradation. The President’s decision to allow Keystone XL to proceed shows a complete disregard for our common home by threatening clean water and human health. Our Indigenous sisters and brothers are some of the most vulnerable to these threats, and so we must stand with them in solidarity.”

Abigail Dillen, Vice President of Litigation for Climate and Energy, Earthjustice:
“This is the latest in a string of decisions where the Trump administration is ignoring facts, public opinion and the law. This decision defies all logic, not to mention the wishes of 75 percent of Americans who want our leaders to regulate climate pollution.”

David Arkush, Managing Director. Public Citizen’s Climate Program:
“The Keystone XL pipeline would raise gas prices for consumers and undermine U.S energy security by sending oil abroad that would otherwise be sold in the U.S. The pipeline is the wrong direction on energy infrastructure and climate change. The best way to lower energy bills, create jobs and improve U.S. energy security is to invest in a rapid transition to 100 percent renewables in the electricity and transportation sectors – and to stop digging up the ground beneath our feet and burning it. Those steps are also precisely what we must to do stave off a global warming catastrophe.”

Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club:
“The dirty and dangerous Keystone XL pipeline is one of the worst deals imaginable for the American people, so of course Donald Trump supports it. This project has already been defeated, and it will be once again. The project faces a long fight ahead in the states, but the fact remains that the American people do not want more fossil fuels, we do not want our private and public lands destroyed by a pipeline carrying the dirtiest fuel around, and we do not want our future and our children’s future to continue be threatened by climate change. Ultimately, Trump’s announcement today will become just the latest decision he makes that results in failure.”

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For more information on the April 29 Peoples Climate Mobilization, visit peoplesclimate.org
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