A group of Keystone XL protesters managed to shut down part of TransCanada’s office in Houston on Monday after storming the building and staging a “die-in” while banging drums, blowing horns and piloting a “pipeline dragon” in circles around them.
Activists with the group Tar Sands Blockade, which opposes the Keystone XL pipeline, explained that the theatrical protest was meant to emphasize that the pipeline, which is already under construction, will be harmful to people and the environment.
Although TransCanada does not yet have authorization to built the northern leg of the pipeline between Canada and the U.S., the southern leg from Oklahoma to Houston has already been the source of much protest in east Texas.
“Our actions today aim to raise awareness and build momentum to halt the destruction that fossil fuel corporations knowingly cause,” they wrote. “Science, and economics and logic provide an obvious imperative for action. However, even overwhelming factual evidence has not compelled our political leaders to stand up to these corporations.”
After a brief standoff with police, two protesters were arrested in the building’s lobby. The group of about 50 activists then staged a noisy display outside as police looked on.
“The tar sands exploitation is the most ecologically destructive project on planet earth right now,” demonstrator Ron Seifert told a reporter with KHOU-TV in Houston. “And indigenous communities are being poisoned.”
This video is from KHOU-TV in Houston, Texas, aired Monday, January 7, 2013.
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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