Everthing is connected: ODOT, resource extraction, tribal sovereignty, and militarism

This is another important action in our area.  Just want to make sure folks know about it.  Is there any doubt that war is related to resource extraction and global warming?  And that our economic system is smothering attempts at democracy?
Courtney Childs
From Peter Goodman of Act on Climate:  This press release and action is the product of many people, many allies who speak in one voice.  These loads of lethal industrial equipment will be stopped.  We will not be passive victims of ecocide.  The world is too precious to allow the tools of our destruction to pass unchallenged.   We are many and we aim to win.  This is the first challenge to ODOT to compel them to obey the law which states that the “public interest” must be considered when approving  oversize loads.  It is a procedural opening to a long legal war we hope to wage and win on the larger issues that threaten our world.   Biosphere destruction is not in the “public interest”.

Date: February 11, 2014
Media contacts:
Carl Sampson (ULLA1855@gmail.com) 541-240-1832
Peter Goodman (pgoodmankayak@hotmail.com) 541-981-2882
Jim Powers (www.ActOnClimate.net jim@actonclimate.net) 541-829-2114
On Tuesday, Peo Peo Mox Mox Chief–Headman of the Walla Walla Tribe Carl Sampson, and Mr. Peter Goodman representing ActOnClimate.net, filed in Marion County Circuit Court to require a court review of a third tarsands equipment Megaload permit issued Thursday February 6 by ODOT. The filing, a “Petition for Review of Agency Decision”, asserts that ODOT failed to meet its legal obligation to determine whether “the public interests will be served” before issuing the permit on Thursday February 6. The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) issued the permit for Omega Morgan to haul a third tarsands equipment Megaload along Eastern Oregon scenic highways passing through tribal lands. ODOT previously denied a request for “party status” to members of the public,Goodman and Sampson. This denial and the lack of any process for public comment prevented public
input before ODOT issued the permit. Oregon law requires ODOT to determine that public interests will be served before issuing a Megaload variance permit. Oregon and federal law also require prior state government to tribal government consultation.
Under current practices ODOT only considers comments from the permit applicant and not from the public, at large, whom it considers irrelevant parties. The position of Sampson and Goodman is that these Megaloads are not ordinary vehicles to be permitted on Oregon scenic highways using routine practices established for normal oversize loads, but that they are extraordinarily large industrial loads (longer than a football field and weighing up to 900,000 pounds), causing substantial harm to the citizens of Oregon and therefore not in the public interest. At the very least, they argue, ODOT should not be making a unilateral decision without a process for hearing public comments on whether these Megaloads are in the “Public Interests”.
We are gathering public concerns and comments on the website http://www.ActOnClimate.net for delivery to ODOT. Since the court action is pending, ODOT has invoked court rules requiring that all public comments we gather be conveyed to ODOT through their attorneys. We can urge the public to write directly to Governor Kitzhaber and their State Legislators with their concerns and comments. It would be helpful to our court action if copies of the letters to the Governor and Legislators are also posted on
http://www.ActOnClimate.net. Act On Climate is networking with a growing list of opposition groups, including tribes and
environmental groups, to alert the public about the importance and consequence of State actions being taken in the name of the public without any process for prior input by the public.
Quote from Peter Goodman: “We are dedicated to stopping the Megaloads in Oregon before they reach their destination at the
Alberta tar sands, “explained Goodman. “The Megaloads are not just another oversize industrial cargo, they are the tools needed to contribute to the dirtiest industrial project in the world. Either we rise to the occasion of the Megaload threat before us or we participate, albeit passively, in our own extinction.”
Quote from Peo Peo Mox Mox Chief Yellowbird–Headman of the Walla Walla Tribe, Carl Sampson:
“And now here we are; in the middle of winter , with no formal notification, no Tribal consultation, no information to our Tribal members at our monthly council meetings let alone our elected officials of the Board of Trustees or General Council that not one, but three Monster “Megaload” are coming onto our ceded boundary lands. How can this be? How can the trust of government to government relations that have been built over decades, be simply ignored. Help me to understand. Help me explain to my people, my children and grandchildren who love the land, mountains and waterways that we have a sacred
connection to since time immemorial. Help me understand why we the people of this land have not had voice on such an important matter. Why did the Oregon Department of Transportation allow a variance permit of such magnitude on our sovereign and inherent Treaty rights, allowing interruption into our ceremonial, culturally, socially and spiritually homelands without regard to the importance to our people?

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