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Aug 11, 21

Lockdown Halts Mountain Valley Pipeline Construction Site for 8 Hours or More

Report back on recent action against the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) which shut down construction for more than 8 hours.

On the 9th of August, activists opposing fracked gas pipelines and eminent domain for corporate profit locked themselves to construction equipment at a Mountain Valley Pipeline construction site near I-81. The lockdown held for 8 hours, probably ending the working day on the pipeline

A total of 10 protesters locked down, backed by nearly 100 more protesters on the site. While cops didn’t have too much trouble marching the support team to the other side of the road, it took over 4 hours for the trailer with specialized equipment to defeat the lockboxes just to arrive.At Noon, 8 of the 10 locked-in protesters were still in place,and the whole morning’s construction work had been halted.

It took a second attempt at extraction to remove the protesters locked to the bulldozer after the first attempt failed. A lockdown that began at 6:30AM continued until 2:30PM, with cleanup and any “evidence collection” preventing any return to a normal workday still longer. This was reported to have been the largest protest to date against the MVP.

The MVP or Mountain Valley Pipeline was supposed to be online delivering fracked gas into another existing gas pipeline, destroying thousands of acres of mountain forests to make fracked gas even cheaper. Instead, protests like this one, a 900+ day treesit, and so many more plus legal challenges have held this project up year after year. Every year, Mountain Valley Pipeline, LLC promises to have the pipeline in use by the following year, and every year they again fail to deliver on this.

From Maxwell, one of the nearly 100 pipeline fighters who stopped work at an MVP site for 8.5 hours yesterday (& one of the folks locked to equipment on site):

One time we were out in the mountains in West Virginia and a friend said, ‘You know, before the white people showed up, you could breathe the air and you could drink the water. There were old growth trees and deer everywhere. A lot of that has been taken away, and now they’re coming back for the rest.

This place is not my home, but it is home to many people whose health and livelihoods will be impacted by the Mountain Valley Pipeline’s construction and its operation. I’m taking this action today in solidarity with them.

I’m also taking action in solidarity with people defending their homes across the globe — from the Zapatistas in Chiapas to Indigenous water protectors fighting Line 3 to the YPG and YPJ in Rojava. My action is small compared to many of theirs. The consequences I face are small compared to the consequences they will face if we fail. My heart goes out to them. I hope yours does too.

Long live anarchy.

Everyone who was arrested at yesterday’s action is now out of jail.

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Defending Appalachia from the Mountain Valley Pipeline, Atlantic Coast Pipeline, and more. No new pipelines in Appalachia!

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