News Roundup 6/7: As the Flames Grow Higher

We just received word that another unreported oil spill occurred, this time in the Niger Delta. On May 10, 2010 ExxonMobile caused the 16th worst oil spill in world history, spilling 214,475,800 gallons of oil. As the US and Europe ignore the ongoing catastrophe in the Niger Delta, resistance in the area builds.

Another methane explosion occurred today, killing 7 workers who were drilling a natural gas well in an abandoned mine in rural West Virginia before the methane ignited into a fireball that stretched up 75 feet into the air. Just last Wednesday, a natural gas explosion occurred in rural Pennsylvania, causing a 16 hour leak of contaminated water.

The anti-dams movement in Chile received a shot in the arm Saturday, when a mobilization brought together different groups from differing social sectors and movements to the capitol city of Santiago. Coordinated by Patagonia Defense Council, Alliance for Climate Justice and Cochabamba Coordination, and it was coordinated by Ecosistemas, the Corporation for the Defense of Flora and Fauna and Sustainable Chile, the mobilization demonstrated opposition to the Pascual Lama project which would pave the way for more dams, turning the fertile and beautiful region of Patagonia into industrial farmland.

Unfortunately, San Diego’s naked bikeride has been canceled due to public nudity laws. Lawyer Sarah Burns argued, that naked bikerides “articulate the need for non-polluting transportation systems and draw attention to the environmental destruction and injury to human health caused by prevailing transportation technologies,” but the judge decided against the free speech of nudity.

Sarah Palin officially accused “extreme environmentalists” of causing the Deep Horizon oil spill. “(They) hypocritically protest domestic energy production offshore and onshore,” Palin announced, so oil drilling has had to move off-shore, away from environmentalists’ prying eyes.

Climate Ground Zero activist, EmmaKate Martin, was released last Thursday after 2½ weeks in jail for blockading a road leading to Massey Energy’s office in Boone County.

Protests took place in Haiti and all over the US on Saturday in opposition to Monsanto’s presence in the disaster-stricken country. Monsanto has “donated” 60,000 sacks of hybrid seeds (mostly corn), but activists see this as a market ploy. Hybrid seeds generally do not reproduce, forcing farmers to return to the dealers in order to buy more seeds every year. This intervention in the natural process of seed production is detrimental to both the local ecology and economy.

Almost 100 people marched through the streets of Kensington, Calgery to protest environmental damage caused by BP this year. As the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico worsens, and political leadership dries up, frustration is building all over the world.

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