Protesters braved cold & rain to rally against the Keystone XL (KXL) pipeline. Photo Courtesy: Marine Zee
WASHINGTON — Some 100 American Indians gathered outside the White House in Lafayette Park on Saturday to protest against the Keystone (KXL) pipeline.
They sang, drummed and spoke about the ill-effects the proposed KXL pipeline.
Related: “NO to KXL” Rally Set for Outside the White House for Saturday
They came to urge Congress about the gravity of the decision they are about to make and the catastrophic results that the construction of the KXL pipeline will have when it spills and contaminates the land and likely the largest aquifer of fresh water in the world that provides 30 percent of the irrigation water and approximately 80 percent of the drinking water for the Great Plains region of the United States according to Tara Houska, one of the rally’s organizers.
They came to urge President Barack Obama to stand by his word to make climate change, protection of the environment a priority and say NO to the Keystone XL (KXL) pipeline.
Emelie Jeffries speaks to crowd outside the White House on Saturday
Those who attended the rally came from distances as far away as Canada, New Mexico, Virginia, and New York. The Native people were joined by non-Natives alike in the cold and rain.
“The Keystone XL Pipeline is not in the national interest and puts the lives of all people who live along its path in serious danger,” commented Emelie Jeffries, one of the organizers and host of “Voices of Our People” hosted by Two Worlds Radio “The KXL Pipeline is a greater threat to national security, more so than any terrorist!”
The timing of the rally, on the first Saturday, is no coincidence. Leaders of the new 114th Congress have vowed to pass the legislation to approve the KXL pipeline as one of its first order of business.
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will hold a hearing on legislation to approve the Keystone XL pipeline project. The hearing will take place on Wednesday, January 7, 2015, at 10 a.m. in room 366 of the Dirksen Senate Office Building. Members of 350.org DC are planning to be there to rally against the pipeline. The hearing will be webcast live on the energy panel’s website.
Photos by Martine Zee
CORRECTION MADE on Tuesday, January 5, 2015, 10:20 am – EST, to potential drinking water impacted by the KXL pipeline, which is 80 percent of the drinking water for the Great Plains region of the United States.