Several Seattle CascadiaNow! Members were arrested and later released as part of a peaceful protest and direct action against Chase Banks continuing involvement and support of the Trans-Mountain Pipeline on Monday.
The action was part of a national day of action against JP Morgan and Chase Bank, and was coordinated 350 Seattle, Protectors of the Salish Sea, DeFund Dapl, and Mazaska Talks. Seattle was one of more than a dozen cities participating in the action, with others taking place in San Francisco, New York, Dallas, and comes a week before Chase’s Annual General Meeting (AGM). Of the hundreds participating – police arrested about a dozen demonstrators that were protesting the propsoed Trans Mountain Pipeline, as well as continued tar-sands development. Protestors occupied Russell Investments Center and erected several large teepees in the middle of 2nd avenue, shutting the streets down, and with protesters atop. Police diverted traffic, and eventually told occupiers to disperse or face arrest. About a dozen remained and peacefully were placed in restraints and loaded into a police van before being removed from the scene.
The pipeline project — an expansion of an existing pipeline — would run from Alberta to British Columbia, where its oil would be loaded onto tankers that would travel the Strait of Juan de Fuca, tripling traffic and potentially endangering the already dwindling Southern Resident orca pod. Opposition to the project has been fierce, and recently developer Kinder Morgan halted spending on the $7.4 billion dollar expansion in April, blaming the delays on protests in British Columbia, but will make a final decision by May 31st.
Seattle CascadiaNow! Member Danny Lange was one of four demonstrators located atop teepees in 2nd avenue, and who were later peacefully arrested for failing to disperse. When the Seattle Fire Department hoisted a ladder up, he politely refused to leave the teepee top. Lange said he was not afraid of arrest and committed to doing what he feels he must for the planet. He had never been arrested before, Lange said, but it became time to take a stand. In an interview with the Seattle times, he was quoted as saying:
“You can’t do this with fear,” Lange said. “I’m doing this to protect our children and grandchildren, the trees, the salmon and all the native species.”
If you support actions like these, and would like to support the Seattle Cascadia Now! chapter, the most effective way is by going to their website directly at http://www.seattlecascadianow.org/donate/ and becoming a monthly member. In addition, everyone is encouraged to get active, and get active about what you care about. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. The Chapter meets weekly and is currently organizing for this years Cascadia convergence, which is $35 suggested donation in SW Washington.