Nov 14, 2016 - Thousands Rally in the Northwest to Protect Water by Matt Remle
On November 12th, thousands rallied in Tacoma WA against the Dakota Access pipeline and against numerous proposed energy intensive projects slated to be built in the Salish Sea.
The Medicine Creek Treaty Tribes of Washington State, the Nisqually, Puyallup, Steilacoom, Squawskin (Squaxin Island), S’Homamish, Stehchass, T’Peeksin, Squi-aitl, and the Sa-heh-wamish called for the action to draw attention and support to not only the on-going fight over the Dakota Access pipeline, but also to proposed oil and coal terminals slated for the Northwest.
In addition to offering support to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, Northwest Tribal leaders highlighted numerous issues impacting local tribes.
Quinault Nation battles proposed oil by rail terminals in Greys Harbor
Currently, Washington State has five oil refineries, four of which already receive oil via rail and the fifth has applied for a permit to do so as well. Roughly, 3 billion gallons of crude moves from the Bakken oil fields in North Dakota through Washington annually and oil companies are aggressively seeking to expand their presence in the Northwest.
There are six proposed train-to-ship oil facilities along the coast of Washington, three slated to be built in Greys Harbor. If built, the new and expanded terminals would increase the amount of oil coming through Washington via rail from 376,000 barrels a day to over 1 million barrels a day.
The three major proposed oil terminals at Greys Harbor would have a combined capacity to handle 164,000 barrels per day, fed by three oil train deliveries per day. Additionally, roughly 700 ships and barges would annually navigate the narrow, and shallow, channel of Greys Harbor, home to a vibrant tribal and commercial fishing economy.
Puyallup Tribe fight to stop proposed Liquefied Natural Gas
Puget Sound Energy is seeking to build a liquefied natural gas plant in Tacoma, WA. The proposed facility would chill natural gas to produce approximately 250,000 gallons of liquefied natural gas (LNG) daily. The Puyallup Tribe opposes the plant due to its potential impact on water and the environment.
According to the Puyallup Tribe, “The Tribe is gravely concerned that the risks to Tribal members, the public and the environment have not been adequately disclosed. As the facility’s proposed location is in the heart of Tacoma, the Tribe asserts that the siting of an 8 million gallon storage tank and the facility to process the natural gas and cool it as liquefied natural gas in the middle of an urban population center is simply unacceptable. The Tribe maintains that the risks involved with the process and storage facility, including the potential for a catastrophic explosion, have not been adequately communicated to the public or the permitting authorities. In addition, the Tribe contends that the siting of the facility on the Tacoma tideflats will undo decades of progress to make the Tacoma waterfront a Pierce County treasure again.”
Pictures from the rally and march
Video of march
by Wakíƞyaƞ Waánataƞ (Matt Remle- Lakota)