Breaking 40+ #WaterProtectors with tribal members of the 1855 including Winona LaDuke and Horse Nations youth risking arrest protecting the Shell River where the @mndnr suspended water surface construction meanwhile Enbridge continues taking water while drilling. #StopLine3 pic.twitter.com/q2EWcUa2JS— Honor the Earth (@HonorTheEarth) July 19, 2021
It’s been a few weeks since the last update and a lot has happened in Minnesota as the Line 3 pipeline enters its final stages of construction.
Firstly, remember when Enbridge spilled that “drilling mud” (that is not actually mud but a bunch of toxic chemicals)? That was three weeks ago and Enbridge has now racked up nine spills of drilling fluid.
As a result of this, just hours before press time, more than 30 legislators from Minnesota’s House of Representatives and Senate released a letter demanding the state halt the Line 3 project and order Enbridge to cease drilling until more data is available about what, exactly, is being released everywhere Enbridge goes and what happens to it once it’s loose.
It’s too early to know what will come of this but the fact that actual Powers That Be are mad might be a sign that things are finally happening.
One of the biggest Line 3 headlines this month was Winona LaDuke being arrested with six other women for resisting pipeline construction. LaDuke was held for three days, from July 19th to 21st. This is obviously ridiculous, but LaDuke remains unflappable. She was interviewed by Amy Goodman on Democracy Now! a couple of days later. Give it a listen!
Closing out with some better news, remember a few weeks ago when police were barricading Water Protectors in their own camps? Well, the camps scored a victory this week as a judge issued a temporary restraining order against Hubbard County to make them stop.
This is a good thing, but the fact that the court challenge boiled down to a question about easements, rather than retaliatory police behavior, should make us uneasy, as if the only thing protecting anyone against this kind of treatment seems to be legal technicalities. It implies that, if it turned out the easement actually had expired, the police would be in the clear to trap people on their own property for any reason (or no reason at all).