August 2020

Indigenous Peoples and Human Rights

Friday, September 9, 2011

PHOTOS: Blood Nation women blockade fracking

Photo by Arnell Tailfeathers

Photo by Arnell Tailfeathers
Photo by Arnell Tailfeathers

Photo by Arnell Tailfeathers

Photo by Arnell Tailfeathers

Three Blood Nation women were arrested Friday night during the fracking blockade in southern Alberta. From Maija Tailfeathers: "Just got arrested. In the back of the cop car with Lois Frank. Texting with handcuffs. 3 Blood Tribe women."  Photos by Arnell Tailfeathers/Censored News.

Blood Nation Women Arrested in Fracking Blockade
By Brenda Norrell
Censored News

UPDATE: Statement from Elle-Maija Tailfeathers, posted at:

Three Blood Nation women were arrested, Friday night, Sept. 9, while blockading oil and gas fracking on Blood Nation land in southern Alberta, near the Montana border.
Maija Tailfeathers said in a text message, "Just got arrested. In the back of the cop car with Lois Frank. Texting with handcuffs. 3 Blood Tribe women."
Blood Nation women stood in front of an oil tanker and brought it to a halt.
The three Blood Nation women arrested were Lois Frank, Jill Crop Earred Wolf, and Elle-Maija Tailfeathers.
Maija Tailfeathers said Saturday, "We were charged with trespassing and intimidation.  As our Rocognizanze Engagement states: We 'wrongfully and without lawful authority for the purpose of compelling Murphy Oil and Gas to abstain from doing anything that they had a lawful right to do, blocked and obstructed a highway, contrary to section 423 (1) (G) of the criminal code.'"
"It actually wasn't a highway, just a side road on the reserve that lead to the well. The charges were up to Chief and Council to lay as we were arrested by tribal police. So we were held for roughly 3-4 hours before charges were formally laid," Tailfeathers told Censored News.
"Our release was conditional, such that we must 'keep the peace and be of good behaviour' as well as stay clear of any of the oil & gas sites on the reserve.  The police officer stated that if we did go near a well, it would be a $1500 fine," she said.
 Before their arrest, the women released a statement.
“Early tonight, numerous women from the Blood Nation have courageously parked in front of Murphy Oil's fracking development site vowing not to move until plans of fracking for oil and gas are stopped,” the women said in a statement.
“The women are part of the Kainai Earth Watch and have been active advocates to stop the fracking due to the major threat to human health, wildlife and livestock and the irreversible damage to the land and water on the Blood Reserve and surrounding areas. They feel this is the only choice left to them to stop the operations as plans for construction begin tomorrow.”
In late 2010, Kainaiwa Resources Inc. (KRI) quietly signed off on a deal with the Calgary-based junior mining company Bowood Energy and the U.S. company Murphy Oil. In exchange for the $50 Million, Bowood Energy and Murphy Oil gained a five-year lease to roughly 129, 280 acres, almost half of the Blood's reserve, for oil and gas exploration.
“Since that time local residents of the Blood Nation and surrounding communities have come together to oppose the projects. Members of the Kainai Earth Watch have partnered with numerous community groups, including the Lethbridge Council of Canadians, to host numerous educational workshops, organize petitions, and meet with government officials. Despite their efforts, nothing has been effective in actually preventing the fracking from going ahead,” Kainai Earth Watch said.
Plans of construction on four new fracking sites begin on Saturday. The women have vowed not to leave until they are confident the fracking won't go ahead.
A Utah corporation formed by non-Indians who exploited oil and gas reserves of the Southern Ute in Colorado, and Uintah and Ouray Ute Indian in Utah, is pushing the fracking on the Blood Reserve. The company is investing large sums of money to destroy the land and environment in Canada.
Kainai Energy was formed in partnership with Native American Resource Partners LLC (NARP), a Utah-based investment firm owned by non-Indians who use the name "Native American," because they focus on exploiting Native American lands. NARP has satellite offices in Calgary and Saskatoon. NARP provided Kainai Energy with $100-million capital for oil and gas fracking and to destroy the land and environment.
The action of the Blood Nation women follows two weeks of sit-ins and 1,252 arrests at the White House in Washington D.C., to stop the tarsands mining, also located in Alberta, and the planned Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta to Texas.
Meanwhile, on the website Protect Blood Land Canada the health dangers of fracking are listed, as well as the fact that Blood Nation members were not consulted about the fracking deal.
“The first issue is the toxic nature of the drilling and its capacity to do irreversible damage to the land and water on the Blood Reserve and surrounding areas. Furthermore, fracking poses a major threat to human health, wildlife and livestock.
“The second issue at hand is the nature of the deal between KRI, Murphy Oil, and Bowood Energy. We believe this to be highly problematic for a number of reasons: Blood Tribe members were NOT consulted during the negotiations of this deal even though the drilling will occur on Blood Tribe land.
“KRI and the Blood Tribe Chief and Council neglected to maintain any degree of transparency during and after the negotiations. Ultimately, leaving a large population of tribal members completely unaware of the situation until after the deal was made.
“Above all else, the health and well-being of Blood Tribe members and all future generations will be compromised due to the rash and reckless decision by KRI and Blood Tribe Chief and Council to sign this deal with Murphy Oil and Bowood Energy.”
Contact: For more information:
Lois Frank 403-795-7945 Mike Bruisedhead 403-737-2194

Statement and video:

No comments: