Enbridge is one of the biggest pipeline builders in North America.
You can designate funds to an emergency response, make an unrestricted annual gift or recommend recurring payments to a special appeal. Another option is to support programs that meet your interests, such as maternal and newborn health, early childhood education, gender equality, child rights and more.Enbridge is one of the biggest pipeline builders (and spillers) in North America. So, why would they care about the wild rice, the Mississippi River, and tribal lands that will be put at risk by a potential pipeline spill?
This is the exact decision that Enbridge’s wanted.
But that money can’t drown out the voices of Minnesotans who have repeatedly said they do not want this pipeline. Over 90 percent of the public comments submitted to the Public Utilities Commission opposed Line 3, and that should matter more than Enbridge’s dollars.
Obama Protects the Arctic Ocean
Building on this momentum, thousands of people called on President Obama to use his legal authority to make the U.S. Arctic Ocean off limits from future oil drilling. In late 2016, Obama took action to permanently protect all of the Chukchi Sea and the vast majority of the Beaufort Sea — as well as a number of biologically important undersea canyons in the Atlantic.This was a big victory for the people-powered climate movement, signalling that the relentless expansion of the oil industry into new areas was finally at an end.But then Trump happened.
The Trump Twist
Trump came into office calling climate change a hoax and giving handouts to dirty energy companies. His plan to open up nearly every U.S. coastline to more oil and gas drilling was extremely unpopular, and in the case of the Arctic Ocean, it outright ignored the fact that Obama had already ruled out future leasing there.
Trump’s new offshore oil plan called for lease sales in the Beaufort Sea starting in 2019 and the Chukchi Sea in 2020. In response, Greenpeace joined with other groups in a lawsuit to challenge the plan in court. Earthjustice and the Natural Resources Defense Council led the litigation, representing Greenpeace along with Alaska Wilderness League, Center for Biological Diversity, Defenders of Wildlife, League of Conservation Voters, Northern Alaska Environmental Center, Resisting Environmental Destruction on Indigenous Lands (REDOIL), Sierra Club, and the Wilderness Society.
The key issue was that when Congress enacted the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act (OCSLA), it gave the president authority to withdraw areas from oil and gas leasing, but made no mention of revoking previous withdrawals.
That’s an act that only Congress itself can take. Judge Sharon Gleason agreed with this analysis, and as she stated in her ruling, Obama’s withdrawals “will remain in full force and effect unless and until revoked by Congress.” The government may appeal this ruling, but for now this is a big victory for the climate.