The Protest Must Go On!

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We were shocked to see that our free speech banners we put up last week were stolen from the public right of way in front of the nasty tar factory being constructed at PR Springs Utah.  The banner “No pipelines! No Stripmines! Utah Land Defenders support Standing Rock and Red Warrior Camp was stolen along with “stripmines Trash Everything”

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In an effort to keep up the fight and our spirits we put up more banners.

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Saturday September 24th at PR Springs Utah

A new banner was placed at Children’s Legacy Overlook near the southern edge of the freshly stripped forest known affectionately as the “Children’s Legacy Camp”  UTSR decided to move our vigil to this overlook near the road as the weather is changing and it is preferable to have a more sunny location.  Around 5pm on saturday  about 1 hour after we arrived and began to set up our tents an unmarked vehicle pulled in (which I had seen on the ridge parked, where you can look at our camp in PR Canyon with binoculars, several times since Friday afternoon) and identifying one of us by name said this nonsense:

“Your XXX right?” You can’t be here I know that you know that this is trust lands because you have been arrested here before.”

UTSR: “Who are You?”

The man said “I am Jason Christensen, I am an investigator for the Uintah county prosecutor”

UTSR: “So why are you talking to us?”

Jason: “I am a peace officer, I have no authority in Grand County but I am doing my personal duty.”

UTSR: “Personal duty? What is a personal duty?”

Jason; “you don’t have personal time?”

UTSR: “your up here on your personal time?”

Jason: “I’m not going to argue with you I’m calling the Grand County Sheriff!”

He does I listen (LOL) we are not actually trespassing.

Jason “i’ve got pictures of you”

He drives to the county line 500 feet away and parks where he can watch us. A fully camo dressed man with a covered face drives by on a 4 wheeler pulls over and says “whats going on?” we say “we are protesting the strip mine” and he says “did we drive there?”  “No we are on bikes!” he says but did you drive here?” we say “do you see a car?” There is none  LOL!!! This makes him mad. He leaves and goes to hang out with Jason. I deem him a “Cop Sucker”

We gather up wood, make a big fire and enjoy an amazing sunset across the stripped land. Another unmarked police vehicle drives by from the Uintah county side and takes more pics with a long lens. He turns around after awhile and comes back towards us he swerves and covers his face to avoid being photographed by us.

No one ever shows up from Grand County. We make sure to stay up late and flash our lights on the mine pit so the Uintah co cops have something to do. They keep watch till well after dark.

On Sunday morning , a bike ride over to the Pig Pen ( a fenced in trailer for the cops to sleep in, Uintah county built onto the side of the US Oil Sands tar processing plant fence line), reveals that the Uintah Cops have gone home to Vernal. The new banner and protest camp can be seen from Seep Ridge Road and many folks drive by who are here hunting and recreating in this remote wilderness.

Many tears have been shed over the loss of  Children’s Legacy Camp and its thriving ecosystem. We will continue to witness and grieve for every leaf of every tree, every single fly, spider, mouse and bear and everything in between we will speak of them, and think of them and honor them, as the precious beings that we know they are. Our banners and protest continue to exist.

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Video of Monday’s Tripod Blockade Shut-Down of Children’s Legacy Camp Clearcutting

Last week, we watched US Oil Sands clearcutting the Children’s Legacy Camp, completely devastating the area in just four short days.

Then on Monday, two tripods went up on the newly-bulldozed haul road that leads into the destruction zone, set up by stealthy and quick-moving allies. No sooner had they thrown up the tripods than two agile climbers had pulled themselves up into their apexes, all before the cops posted at the processing site down the road must have had any idea what was happening.

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Watch this awesome video of the action from Direct Autonomous Media!

As the day wore on, spirits stayed high, with folks singing, chanting, and calling moral support to the tripod sitters. By late morning, a cherry picker had finally arrived to extract the folks perched on the tripods. But after the cops arrested the  first tripod sitter, and the cherry picker was moving toward the second, another quick-thinking comrade locked to the cherry picker itself, causing a serious delay to the extractions!

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For more coverage of the action, visit PeacefulUprising.org/aca2015

We’re so very grateful for the brave folks who took action to defend Children’s Legacy Camp and the legacy we are leaving for the children of our world. The images of the bulldozed site speak for themselves: The only legacy USOS would leave our children is one of toxic destruction. We think they deserve something better. Join us at the vigil to see for yourself what is happening and get involved!

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BREAKING: USOS Is Bulldozing Children’s Legacy Camp NOW

BREAKING: US Oil Sands is at this moment bulldozing the beloved Children’s Legacy Camp–a site where we’ve held multiple Intergenerational Campouts and other events over the past three years!

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Over the past day, they have been stripping trees and soil from the land, dumping soil into the lush canyon below their processing site.

The Utah Division of Oil, Gas and Mining recently issued them a permit to expand into this area, but USOS has not yet secured its permits from the EPA to allow it to move forward with work. The EPA sent the company a letter in June 2014–over a year ago–telling it to get these permits.

We are outraged at how the state of Utah turns a blind eye to the harm USOS is causing to our watershed and airshed, and to the rampant habitat destruction they are right now causing to one of our region’s most diverse and wild places.

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The children who have spent time bonding with this land will be devastated to see these photos, but they need to know whose interests the state of Utah protects. It’s their future at stake, and we need to fight for it alongside them, and alongside all frontline resisters fighting the world’s most deadly projects.

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These photos say it all. There is no future in tar sands mining. It brings death, destruction, depletion of our most vital resources. JOIN US at the vigil, see for yourself what is at stake, and take action. Write letters to the editor, call the people who are allowing this to go forward without even the bare-minimum permitting, and JOIN THE FIGHT to stop it!

This is NOT any kind of future for our children and grandchildren! Call the Division of Oil, Gas and Mining at (801) 538-5329. Flood EPA Region 8’s lines! 303-312-6312 or in Region 8 states 800-227-8917.

Your voice, your presence, your energy are needed now more than ever to prevent this destruction from going any further!

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US Oil Sands (or the State of Utah?) Prematurely Posts No-Trespassing Signs on Contested Site

DOGM (Utah’s Division of Oil, Gas and Mining) ruled last week that US Oil Sands could expand its work zone into what we have come to call “Children’s Legacy Camp,” the beloved site where we’ve held our Intergenerational Campout for the past two years. Days before that decision was made, however, USOS (or state officials working at their behest?) had already posted “No Trespassing” signs along the boundary of the area, despite the fact that the public was fully permitted to hike, camp, or otherwise enjoy that area of land.

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What’s more, the signs are labeled “Uintah County” although the area is actually within Grand County. In their hurry to lay claim to the site, it seems USOS couldn’t even get the basic details right—or perhaps they made that mistake intentionally. It seems obvious to us why they would want the police force of a more industry-friendly county to deal with any potential trespassers even when it’s the legal jurisdiction of a more tourism-friendly county.

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What’s most troubling to us is that state officials have either overtly or tacitly sanctioned this premature claim of public lands. A cop working for the Attorney General’s office was posted at the site for the duration of Peaceful Uprising’s Colorado Plateau Defense Camp last week, and the signs were posted during that time. It’s hard for us to imagine that he didn’t witness or at some point notice the posting of the signs, which stand in an area between the Colorado Plateau Defense Camp location and the mine site, even if he wasn’t personally responsible for posting them. Either possibility is an obvious case of corporate-state collusion.

And if it were USOS that posted the signs or requested them, we believe their poor attention to detail should be just another deterrent to any potential investors who are contemplating putting their money into the project. The company’s propensity for making brash and foolhardy decisions doesn’t bode well for its potential to manage a project bearing the level of risk that theirs does.