Late on December 2, 2017, Blue Virginia posted commentary as well as a set of videos and photos from the Water Is Life rally that afternoon in Richmond. Over 800 Virginians from all across the state joined with elected officials, a statewide coalition of environmental advocates, and indigenous tribal leaders (and a giant water puppet!) for a historic demonstration against the proposed Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley pipelines. Also included in the Blue Virginia article is a press release from the groups who organized the rally. Other early press coverage included articles in the Augusta Free Press and the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
Here’s a video of the activities from the Water Is Life folks:
And here’s a video from CCAN showing protesters and organizers assembling a human chain in a huge circle around the State House and the Governor’s Mansion, the entire perimeter of the Capitol grounds – a first for any rally in Richmond.
Eight-four Members of the U.S. House of Representatives sent a letter to Attorney General Sessions this week questioning whether the U.S. Department of Justice was properly equipped to respond to “recent attempts to disrupt the transmission of oil and natural gas through interstate and international pipeline infrastructure.” Specifically, the congressmen – 80 Republicans and 4 Democrats (all 4 from Texas) – posed several questions in their October 23 letter, including whether existing federal statutes “adequately arm the DOJ to prosecute criminal activity against energy infrastructure at the federal level?”
The congressmen’s letter comes the same week that the Energy Builders Energy Infrastructure Incident Reporting Center was announced. The Center’s website lists incidents of what it considers to be “criminal attacks on critical energy infrastructure.”
Among the incidents the website lists as qualifying as one of “violence, sabotage, illegal trespass or other opposition misconduct” is the September 15 demonstrations in Richmond at the offices of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality. Energy Builders proclaims itself as “a grassroots coalition of workers, local businesses, civic leaders, unions and American families who work directly in or support the energy delivery supply chain.” In reality, Energy Builders is a program of the Energy Equipment and Infrastructure Alliance, a coalition of companies involved in the shale energy supply chain.
[Thanks to ABRA for this article from their ABRA Update #153, October 26, 2017.]