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Program Information
War of the Trees
Keystone XL becoming the HLS of oil
News Report
 WSQT Direct Action Radio  Contact Contributor
March 24, 2013, 7:39 p.m.

The week of March 16th to March 23 was a global week of action against tar sands profiteers. These are corporations with vested financial interests in the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. One good examples is Valero Energy, whose contract to
buy massive amounts of diluted tar oil made the pipeline possible. Another is TD Bank, the single largest commercial lender to TransCanada's Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. Both of these were hit in actions here in DC as part of the week of action against tar sands profiteers.

TD Bank got a nasty surprise when they showed up sometime before 7AM on the 19th of March to open their branch at 15th and P streets. Two activists were locked to a concrete-filled trash can known as a "bear trap" weighing hundreds of pounds. Another was locked to the doors with a chain, closing them. All were part of "Tar Sands Blockade Solidarity." There was no access to the 24 hour ATM. It took police until 8 AM to remove the blockade. In order to get the blockaders to let go, police had to let them leave without being arrested! Otherwise, the 2-cycle gas powered chop saw they had would have would have filled the bank with smoke and the dust might have destroyed the ATM.

(sound clip-chop saw)

Cops hung white sheets over all windows from which the blockade could be seen after cutting the chain holding the first activist to the door and letting him go. They hooded the activists locked to the concreted trash can like detainees at Guantanimo Bay and threatened to saw them out, at considerable risk of injuries:


The only thing is, TD Bank did not want the ugly publicity stemming from arrests, and sure as hell did not want that ATM trashed by dust from cutting through hundreds of pounds of concrete. It would have taken a half hour at most to saw out the barricade. Offered the chance to withdraw without arrest, they took it and departed having sent a very strong message to TD Bank. By no means were DC pro-Earth activists finshed with TD Bank!

Two days later, Rising Tide DC and Cheapeake Earth First! were up at bat. Everyone gathered by the Canadian Embassy, making the cops think the Embassy was the objective. Louise Thundercloud of the Lakota Nation had this to say:


The march set out north, bound for the TD Bank on 7th st, the same one that had their windows smashed the night before the Inauguration. When protesters arrived, they made a serious effort to storm the building and several got inside. Cops pushed them back with considerable difficulty. Here's what things sounded like as protesters swarmed in on TD Bank:


After departing from TD Bank, protesters descended on the ritzy office space rental building at 601 Penn Ave. One of their tenants is Valero Energy, the number one planned buyer for tar sands "oil" from the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. Not expected there, they caught security with their pants down and stormed into the building, complete with a 15 foot or so "pipeline" made from cardboard and even one activist's bike. Security went NUTS, cops got physical-but five activists sat
down and REFUSED to leave. Here's what things sounded like as opponents of the Keystone XL stormed 601 Pennsylvania Ave targetting Valaro:


Things quickly heated up...


It took the cops another half hour to remove the sit-in. The five activists were brought out in handcuffs to the cheers of the crowd.


Finally, dancing protesters ripped the cardboard replica of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline to shreds. The Keystone XL
just seems to get destroyed when it's around pro-Earth activists!

At about the same time as the march on TD Bank and Valero, yet another group of activists staged an "Interfaith Civil Disobediance" against the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, with another 15 arrests.

DC area opponents of the Keystone XL still weren't done with tar sands funder TD Bank. On the morning of Saturday, the 23ed of March, protesters returned to the same branch of TD Bank that had been on the receiving end of Tuesday's concrete barrel blockade. This time it was Climate First! up at bat, for the 3ed visit in five days to what organizers called "Tar Dollar Bank." Security wasn't expecting them, and they were able to march unopposed into the outer lobby.


When police finally pushed protesters back out the door, one of them had this to say:

(Louise Thundercloud had this to say:


Speaking of canaries, TD Bank, also known as Tar Dollar Bank, may well be the canary in the coal mine for
what is going to happen to those who invest in the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. They own over half a billion
dollars worth of shares in TransCanada, builder of the tar sands pipeline. As one of the protesters says "Own the
shares, share the blame! In one of the final acts of the week of action against tar sands profiteers, Climate First!
went on to a second branch of TD Bank, causing them too to empty out.

Across the continent, there were something like 55 actions in all during the Tar Sands Profitters week of action.
Protesters in New York appeared on the 23ed of March at TD Bank branches as well. Yet more TD Bank
protests took place in New Haven, Connecticut. In Salt Lake City, Utah residents blockaded a Chevron oil refinery and turned away six trucks. Valero's corporate headquarters in San Antonio, Texas was stormed and taken over the previous day, and TransCanada themselves also had offices stormed and shut down over the week.

This is but the beginning! Hey TD Bank and Valero, why don't you talk to Fortress Inc about how just how bad it can get when you do business with those animal experimenters at Huntingdon Life Sciences? TransCanada and the Keystone XL are
rapidly becoming the Huntingdon Life Sciences of oil, and that means protests won't stop at the office but will show up
at executives' homes the way things are going. With tar sands there's


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