"Native Company" Routes "Peace Pipeline" Through City Cemeteries, Golf Courses, Schools
"Enbridge-funded initiative" makes amends for mass desecration of Indigenous sites
The IPC leadership will address the Duluth City Council at the 7pm Council meeting (411 West First Street, Room 330), and will be available to answer press questions afterwards.
DULUTH, MN - Enbridge Inc., the energy transport company whose Line 3 Replacement Project will overrun sacred tribal lands along its 1,031-mile route, is making amends to Native Americans by ceding full control over the final 19 miles to a company called the "Indigenous Pipeline Council" (IPC).
Or so it seemed this weekend in Duluth.
This Saturday and Sunday, the "IPC" (actually Indigenous activists Gitz Crazyboy and Tito Ybarra) began demonstratively destroying Duluth, beginning with "sacred remains relocations" at Duluth cemeteries (one clumsy team kept dropping a casket as horrified churchgoers looked on), construction surveys at Duluth's most elite country clubs, brochures and door hangers distributed widely, and a number of public outreach events, including a catered announcement to business and political leaders at the swanky Moorish Room in downtown Duluth.
During that event, hapless attendees were informed they were officially ceding control of their entire communities' landholdings by dint of their simple attendance. To seal the deal, many were asked to don a black foam headdress labelled "Oil Chief" (and they did), before joining a "Dance of the Black Snake" led by hissing, spitting IPC exec "Coyote Mick Tomi" (Ybarra).
Then, earlier today, the official announcement of the IPC's plans went out over email. That was soon met with an expression of concern (archive) from a fake "Minnesotans for Line 3"—the "real" group is in fact an industry front group, funded by Enbridge—followed quickly by an alarmed statement from a fake Enbridge (archive), formally retracting their "gift" of the 19-mile segment to the Native-run IPC.
The whole series of events—the falling cadavers and other interventions, the widely-seen blueprints and brochures, the fake press releases—was part of an elaborate hoax, concocted by Crazyboy and Ybarra in collaboration with the Yes Men.
The IPC’s route through cemeteries, golf clubs, and backyards mirrored the ways that Indigenous communities across the continent are affected by development. Energy companies like Enbridge routinely force pipelines through Indigenous lands, plowing through sacred burial sites without community consent, contaminating vital food systems, and devastating the health of Native communities. In a phenomenon known as the “Boomtown Effect,” developing areas of high oil extraction potential has been shown to correlate strongly with rising rates of violent crime, drug addiction, and in the case of native communities, murdered and missing Indigenous women.(1)(2)(3)
Right now, Enbridge is lobbying to build a new Line 3 route to replace the current leaking, 68-year-old original pipeline. At $7.5 billion, this pipeline would be the largest project in Enbridge’s history.(4) It would transport tar sands crude, one of the dirtiest fuels on earth; the crude's transport, processing, and eventual burning would result in C02 emissions equivalent to the output of 50 new coal fired power plants.(5) The route would violate treaty land rights held by the Anishaabeg since the 1850s (6), and would have a devastating environmental and cultural impact. Enbridge pipelines have spilled over 800 times in the last 15 years(7), including the largest spill in US history outside of Grand Rapids, MN in 1991, from the existing Line 3. In any 10-year period, there is a 57% chance of a major spill.(8)
"It’s hard to imagine that a pipeline as bad as the IPC’s could exist, but it's actually close to the truth, just in reverse," said executive director of Honor the Earth, Winona LaDuke. "Oil is destroying our land."
Some members of the Stop Line 3 coalition co-conspired to create this action. Support Stop Line 3 by donating or taking suggested action.
(1) "UN SPECIAL RAPPORTEUR: OIL, GAS & MINING OPERATIONS BRINGS INCREASED SEXUAL VIOLENCE," Native News Online website
(2) "Native Leaders Bring Attention to Impact of Fossil Fuel Industry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls," Indigenous Environmental Network website
(3) "Drilling Down: An Examination of the Boom-Crime Relationship in Resource-Based Boom Counties," Western Criminology Review 15(1), 3-17 (2014)
(4) "Line 3 Replacement Program," Enbridge website
(5) "Line 3 Issues," Stop Line 3 website
(6) "Ojibwe Treaty Rights Fact Sheet," Honor the Earth website
(7) "Importing Disaster: The Anatomy of Enbridge’s Once and Future Oil Spills," >National WIldlife Federation
(8)"Leak Detection Study," U.S. Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration