Keith Wiley of Kootenays For A Pipeline Free BC

Pipeline protest in Nelson

Protesters gathered to raise concerns about tar sands and oil pipelines during national Defend Our Climate day.

They listened to music, sang songs, heard speeches and stood up for what they thought was right.

More than 100 people gathered outside Nelson City Hall, holding signs and protesting the creation and expansion of oil pipelines.

Nelson residents who are concerned about climate change, the tar sands and bitumen pipelines  joined forces Saturday, November 16 as part of the national day of action called Defend Our Climate.

Keith Wiley from the  local citizens’ group Kootenays for a Pipeline-Free BC, was one of many organizers of the event.

“American scientist James Hansen points out that if the tar sands development is allowed to increase production and create huge amounts of carbon dioxide, all other efforts to check climate change will be useless,” said Wiley.  “Putting our finger in to plug the pipeline is the least Canadians can do to help save our planet.”

Events similar to this one took place in cities and towns across Canada

“The target, specifically, is not expanding the tar sands and not having pipelines which allows expansion of the tar sands and a huge expansion of greenhouse gases into our atmosphere. We have been very active in opposing the proposed bitumen pipeline project from BC,” said Wiley.

He added that his group is against all bitumen pipelines.

‘We want the Federal Government to stop pandering to the oil companies and start taking some concerns for our climate.”

Wiley stressed that it is a concern for more than just British Columbians.

“They say if they build the pipelines it will allow the tar sands production to triple … The good people of the United States are actively opposing the Keystone XL pipeline to go through the states because of local environmental concerns, but also because they recognize it will allow for huge expansion of the tar sands.

He said BCers have to do their part and not allow the pipelines through “our territory.”

The local event was sponsored by Kootenays for a Pipeline-Free BC, the Nelson chapter, Council of Canadians and the West Kootenay EcoSociety.

For more information about climate change and pipeline activism in the Kootenays visit the Facebook page: Kootenays for a Pipeline-Free BC.

You can also visit defendourclimate.ca.

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