On Line 9: Solidarity with Indigenous Resistance


Click to view interactive version. Photo courtesy Environmental Defence Canada.

Those of you who have been following our campaign and the fight against tar sands have probably heard about Line 9, Enbridge’s proposed plan to ship tar sands to the East Coast. Here’s how Crow, an organizer with the Line 9 Resistance and solidarity organizer with the Unist’ot’en camp, describes the project:

“Line 9 is a 30-year-old Enbridge pipeline built to transport conventional crude oil from Montreal to the refining hub known as Chemical Valley, a hub of 63 petrochemical facilities outside of Sarnia, Ontario. All refineries surround the Anishinaabe community of Aamjiwnaang First Nation, which some call the most polluted place in North America. The miscarriage rate is 40%, life expectancy is 55, cancer is prevalent, and the birth rate for girls is double the birth rate for boys. Aamjiwnaang First Nation is the only place in the world that such an abnormal birth ratio has been documented.

Enbridge wants to reverse the flow of Line 9 to transport diluted bitumen (dilbit) to Montreal, and eventually to Portland, Maine for export via supertanker. They also want to increase the volume from 240,000 barrels a day to 300,000 barrels a day by using something called Drag Reducing Agents. The pipeline is very similar to Enbridge Line 6B, famous for the Kalamazoo disaster. It was built around the same time, uses the same interior lining, and is part of the same network of pipelines. Since dilbit is more corrosive and acidic than oil and has to be heated and shipped at higher pressure, this seems like a recipe for disaster.

We see Tar Sands Blockade and the Line 9 resistance as natural allies. Our campaigns are two fronts of one war.  We will not let your efforts be undermined by allowing 300,000 barrels a day of filthy tar sands to reach the East coast.

Momentum is definitely building on the Line 9 campaign. It’s shaping up to be a major battleground in tar sands resistance. We look at this campaign as an opportunity to build cross-border solidarity in the movement against extreme extraction. Stay tuned for more.” – Crow, solidarity organizer, Line 9 Resistance, Unist’ot’en Camp

Tar Sands Blockade stands in solidarity with the Line 9 Resistance and all those resisting tar sands and other forms of extreme energy extraction worldwide. Our struggles are intricately interconnected, and for any of us to succeed we all have to work together and support each other. We look forward to working with the Line 9 resistors and others fighting tar sands pipelines to develop a strategy to stop the tar sands for good.

In the words of Missy Elliot, from Haudenosaunee Territory of Six Nations, whose land is also crossed by the Line 9 pipeline:

 “We will stop this pipeline…by whatever means necessary.”

For more information, check out the following video, “Line 9: The Tar Sands Come to Ontario”:

Permanent link to this article: https://tarsandsblockade.org/line-9/