Sunday, July 29, 2012

20 Activists Arrested during RAMPS Protest of Mountain Top Removal

RAMPS Activists Arrested During Protest of Mountain Top Removal Mining Project

From RAMPS (the organizers):
"More than 50 protesters affiliated with the R.A.M.P.S. Campaign have walked onto Patriot Coal’s Hobet mine and shut it down.  Ten people locked to a rock truck, boarded it and dropped banners: ”Coal Leaves, Cancer Stays.”  At least three have been arrested, with another in a tree being threatened by miners with a chain saw.  Earlier in the day, two people were arrested at Kanawha State Forest before a group of protesters headed to the state capitol.

Additional coverage provided by San Francisco Chronicle

Transcript from protest yesterday and legal action today: via RAMPS

2012-07-29 14:46:06
We are doing everything we can to get Dustin Steele out of jail, after he was beaten by authorities yesterday.
2012-07-29 13:57:31
All our folks not incarcerated are safe and sound.  20 arrestees charged in Lincoln County are now in Western Regional Jail in Barboursville, WV.  
2012-07-28 19:50:54
Folks who got off the mine site without being arrested being harassed, chased, blocked in by miners.  They are still on the road being chased by miners in trucks that are making driving difficult.
2012-07-28 19:18:02
URGENT REPORT FROM JAIL SUPPORT:  Our arrestees are being held in a field in Danville, WV.  Jail support was put up against a wall and then told they had to leave the area.  Angry miners are in the area and we are worried about safety.
2012-07-28 17:27:49
Both people arrested in the Kanawha State Forest earlier today have been released!
2012-07-28 17:22:16
An AP reporter tells us the State Police are reporting about 20 arrests.   Arraignment expected at 10 pm.  Around 25 people have managed to leave the mine without arrest.
2012-07-28 17:12:16
Some of our drivers were boxed in at a gas station by angry miners.  One miner hit 3 of our folks with pepper spray.  The State Police dispersed the miners and that crew is now ok.
2012-07-28 15:36:57
Valley fills on the Hobet mine - which have allowed mining to go forward - were approved by the Obama Administration

2012-07-28 14:11:42
Garcia getting buzzed by helicopter, which is marked "N3wv".
2012-07-28 14:03:33
Person in tree is Bryan Garcia of Katuah Earth First! 
2012-07-28 13:50:31
2012-07-28 13:34:24
No visual on chain saw.
2012-07-28 13:33:24
Another person is in a tree, with four miners around him on the ground threatening to use a chain saw.
2012-07-28 13:31:30
Three protesters arrested on mine site, some others being escorted off. 
2012-07-28 13:05:40
Received word from the field that Hobet, one of the largest strip mines in the East, is shut down!  Follow us on Twitter @rampswv, #stopMTR #ClimateSOS

20 Arrested Protesting Mountain Top Removal - Via Occupy the Environment

July 29, 2012 by nuevaspora

"Dorian Williams, active in OB’s CASEJ working group, Students for a Just and Sustainable Future,, and now 350 MA, was arrested last night, along with about 19 others, after successfully shutting down a mountain top removal mine in West Virginia. The action was organized by RAMPS (Radical Action for Mountain People’s Survival), a nonviolent organization centered in the coal fields of West Virginia, and dedicated to ending all strip mining in Appalachia. These 20 people stopped production by using lockboxes to attach themselves to a giant rock truck, as a means of calling attention to the harms of strip mining and the damage it does to local communities, local ecosystems, and the global atmosphere.

Knowing Dorian personally, I can say that she is a passionate and hard working person who puts great thought into how to be a more responsible member of a global community, and is quite bright in all senses of the word. She is an optimist who believes that dedicated people can mobilize to make the world a better place. It might be easiest to write her and her cohort off as kids seeking a thrill, but I can vouch that at least one is a deeply conscientious adult responding to a dire situation. It’s a reality that might leave one looking a little harder at herself.

There is now a collection going out for their bail, but I’d like to take the “ask” a step further. Tell everyone you can think of that this is happening. Tell them why."

Via Occupy Worcester 

"Today 20 people were arrested at the largest activist shut down of a Mountaintop Removal coal mine in US history. Among them was boston-area activist and student Dorian Williams.

These people made a serious sacrifice in the hopes that our movement community can rise up to support them, and they need our support. Please consider donating to bail them out of jail.

Below is a message from Zak Rogoff of Worcester who was participated in the action today:
As I write this, SJSF’s very own Dorian is locked to a giant rock truck at one of the world’s largest mountaintop removal mines. She and other activists with the RAMPS campaign are shutting down much of the mine until police and miners can cut the lockboxes the’ve used to attach themselves to the truck. There are other activists in a tree and blocking other parts of the mine.

"This is the biggest ever direct action on a mountaintop removal mine, and I know we’re making history. These mines in West Virginia are one of America’s frontlines in fight to save our planet from fossil fuels. That means this isn’t just direct action against mountaintop removal, it’s direct action against climate change."

And the best part? Dorian is wearing an SJSF shirt!:


I’m going to allow myself a HELL YEAH. I’m at media base camp near the mine, and being here is incredibly powerful. The best thing you all can do to help Dorian is spread the word through every form of media you can: Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, email, word of mouth, whatever. There are updates on the RAMPS site and on Twitter with the tag #stopMTR."

-Zak Rogoff

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