As part of President Obama’s fundraising trip to Southern California, a crowd of over 300 activists greeted him in Santa Monica, calling for action on climate change, foremost by rejecting the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.
Santa Monica, CA – As President Obama attended a recent fundraiser in Santa Monica, a crowd of over 300 activists gathered to remind him of their opposition to the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, which would transport 830,000 thousand barrels a day of the world’s dirtiest oil and would open up development of the Canadian tar sands, among the largest carbon bombs on the planet. The group called on the President to keep his climate promises and protect future generations by rejecting the Keystone pipeline and making meaningful progress on confronting climate change.
Meanwhile, a few blocks down the street, hundreds more rallied to express their dissatisfaction with Obama’s deportation record, which ended in the arrest of eleven protesters practicing peaceful civil disobedience.
Represented in the KXL crowd was a diverse coalition of local and national organizations working on environmental and progressive issues. Activists from Sierra Club, Sierra Club Angeles Chapter, 350.org, Tar Sands Action Southern California, CREDO, the Center for Biological Diversity, Burbank Green Alliance, and Wilder Utopia attended the rally, as well as Sierra Student Coalition, Green Festival Los Angeles, Bio-Diesel Co-op, Citizens Climate Lobby Pasadena Foothills Chapter, AEP, Miss R*EVOLutionaries, Friends of the Earth, Sachamama, and Interfaith Power and Light.
Jack Eidt, Organizer with Tar Sands Action SoCal and Founder/Editor of WilderUtopia, emphasized the significance of President Obama’s decision: “President Obama has the rare opportunity to reject the pipeline without having to consult Congress. Should he reject the project based on its adverse climatic effects, he would demonstrate world leadership in recognizing the mutually beneficial relationship between ecology and economy.”
Darrell Clarke, Volunteer Co-Lead with Sierra Club’s Beyond Oil Campaign, added, “We’re here to tell President Obama to reject Keystone XL for our children’s future. We can create jobs and make America truly energy independent with clean energy. Dirty tar sands can’t get us there.”
Jim Waterhouse, of Citizens Climate Lobby, said: “We urge citizens to demand meaningful climate legislation to ensure a survivable planet. Along with rejecting the Keystone XL, the best next step is a Carbon Fee with proceeds returned to the people.”
Sherry Anne Lear, co-founder of Miss R*EVOLutionaries, a progressive women’s group based in Los Angeles, added, “Miss R*EVOLutionaries considers climate change one of the most critical issues facing our generations and the future generations and we are adamantly opposed to the Keystone XL Pipeline as well as tar sands extraction. The Obama administration has not followed through on its promises to protect our environment and President Obama clearly has enough information by now to know that the Keystone XL Pipeline project must be rejected. Our Earth and our children are depending on this.”
The fight over the Keystone XL pipeline has energized millions and become a test of President Obama’s commitment to dealing with the climate crisis. This event followed a similar rally outside a fundraiser attended by the President in Palo Alto, California, as part of an ongoing effort over the past several months to meet President Obama at nearly all of his public events and demand that he keep his promises on climate and reject the permit for the pipeline.
Other stories in the media…
Environmentalists Vow to Confront Obama in Santa Monica Tomorrow, The Front Page Online, Ari L. Noonan, 6/6/13
Pipeline to the President, EnviroReporter, Michael Collins, 6/9/13
President In SoCal for Fundraising, Summit With China’s President, NBC Los Angeles (Video Clip), Jonathan Lloyd and Lisa Fernandez, 6/7/13
President Obama Makes Brief Visit to L.A. for Fundraiser, Fox 11/CNS, Gigi Graciette, 6/7/13
Activists Send Divided Message in Brentwood, LA Progressive, Sharon Kyle, 6/8/13
FOX 11 Morning News at 10 AM (Video Clip), KTTV-LA (FOX) – Los Angeles, CA, 6/7/13