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NEWS: Activists arrested at White House protesting Keystone pipeline today

Prominent U.S. activists arrested at KXL protest near White House today.

Prominent U.S. activists arrested at KXL protest near White House today.

The Associated Press reports, “Prominent U.S. environmental leaders, including the head of the Sierra Club, were arrested Wednesday after tying themselves to the White House gate to protest the Keystone XL oil pipeline from Canada. Executive director Michael Brune is the first Sierra Club leader in the group’s 120-year history to be arrested in an act of civil disobedience. …Activist Bill McKibben, actress Daryl Hannah, civil rights leader Julian Bond and environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy Jr. also were arrested Wednesday, along with several dozen other activists.”

“Obama has called climate change a serious threat and urged Congress to combat the phenomenon in his State of the Union speech Tuesday night. If Congress fails to act, he will use executive authority to take steps to cut greenhouse gas pollution and encourage increased use of cleaner sources of energy, Obama said. Obama has twice thwarted the Keystone XL pipeline because of concerns over its route through sensitive land in Nebraska, but has not indicated how he will decide on the pipeline now that Nebraska’s governor has approved a new route. The State Department has authority over the project, because it crosses an international border, but most observers expect Obama to make the final decision.”

“Wednesday’s protest came hours before the American Petroleum Institute, the largest lobbying group for the oil industry, again urged Obama to approve the project. The group said it will pay for ads supporting the pipeline and will mobilize grassroots events across the country urging Obama’s approval.”

The Council of Canadians will be present at the #ForwardOnClimate rally in Washington, DC this Sunday February 17 and is encouraging everyone who can attend to join the protest which is expected to be about 20,000 people in size, http://canadians.org/blog/?p=19244.