September 30, 2014

Blockading pipelines works, revisited

We posted back in June that pipeline blockades, limiting overall pipeline capacity, have a real effect in driving up costs and causing potential tar sands projects to be suspended or canceled. We got more evidence this past week that blockading pipelines works: Statoil Just Shelved Its Multi-Billion-Dollar Tar Sands Project. While the article focuses on the Keystone XL pipeline, which has seen a lot of symbolic protest, even more important may be the direct action blockades such as the Unis'tot'en Camp, physically disallowing construction of the Northern Gateway pipeline.

The article correctly states that, though this is a big victory for environmentalists, it's just a drop in the bucket compared to the entirety of fossil fuel emissions we need to halt. Aboveground activists should certainly keep applying strategic pressure to shut down projects where possible, but we still need to encourage and support the formation of an underground which can be much more effective with asymmetric tactics, as described in the Deep Green Resistance Decisive Ecological Warfare strategy.

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