President Donald Trump on Tuesday signed executive orders advancing the controversial Keystone XL (KXL) and Dakota Access (DAPL) pipelines, prompting a tsunami of outrage and vows of bold resistance from the Indigenous activists, climate campaigners, and countless others who have fought against these projects.
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The Associated Press confirmed the orders had been signed after earlier reports citing anonymous officials indicated they were in the works.
Many environmental groups who fiercely fought against both projects were quick to condemn the move, declaring, as 350.org did, “We have no alternative but to resist.”
350.org co-founder Bill McKibben issued a statement declaring the moment “a dark day for reason.”
“More people sent comments against Dakota Access and Keystone XL to the government than any project in history. The world’s climate scientists and its Nobel laureates explained over and over why it was unwise and immoral,” McKibben said. “In one of his first actions as president, Donald Trump ignores all that in his eagerness to serve the oil industry. It’s a dark day for reason, but we will continue the fight.”
“Trump clearly doesn’t know what he’s doing,” agreed 350.org executive director May Boeve. “Indigenous peoples, landowners, and climate activists did everything in our power to stop Keystone XL and Dakota Access, and we’ll do it again. These orders will only reignite the widespread grassroots opposition to these pipelines and other dirty energy projects. Trump is about to meet the fossil fuel resistance head on.”
“This is not a done deal,” McKibben added. “People will mobilize again.”
Progressive lawmakers and climate groups echoed that promise, issuing a chorus of statements condemning the president for “putting the profits of the fossil fuel industry ahead of the future of the planet.”
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CREDO Action deputy political director Josh Nelson also noted that “fierce grassroots activism has stopped these pipelines over and over again,” while David Turnbull, campaigns director at Oil Change International declared the pipelines “will never be completed.”
“Both the Keystone XL and Dakota Access Pipelines will never be completed, no matter what President Trump and his oil-soaked cabinet try to do,” Turnbull said. “Trump’s first days in office saw massive opposition, marking the beginning of four years of resistance to his dangerous policies. We stopped Keystone XL and Dakota Access before and we’ll do it again. These are fights Trump and his bullies won’t win.”
As Greenpeace executive director Annie Leonard said, “A powerful alliance of Indigenous communities, ranchers, farmers, and climate activists stopped the Keystone and the Dakota Access pipelines the first time around, and the same alliances will come together to stop them again if Trump tries to raise them from the dead.”
“We all saw the incredible strength and courage of the water protectors at Standing Rock,” Leonard said, “and the people around the world who stood with them in solidarity. We’ll stand with them again if Trump tries to bring the Dakota Access Pipeline, or any other fossil fuel infrastructure project, back to life.”
“Instead of pushing bogus claims about the potential of pipelines to create jobs,” she continued, “Trump should focus his efforts on the clean energy sector where America’s future lives…Renewable energy is not only the future, but the only just economy for today. Keystone, the Dakota Access Pipeline, and fossil fuel infrastructure projects like them will only make billionaires richer and make the rest of us suffer.”
Leonard concluded with the promise, “We will resist this with all of our power and we will continue to build the future the world wants to see.”
As the news quickly spread, many took to Twitter to share their vows of resistance.
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