By UUSC Staff on July 30, 2021
The Unitarian Universalist young adult community is fired up about our world on fire. Last month, the young adult delegation at the UUA General Assembly successfully brought forward a Responsive Resolution about “Creating a More Just Future Through Divesting from Pipelines and Investing in Young People”. Right now, a delegation of 20 UU young people and coalition partners is going to northern Minnesota to show up for the Anishinaabe water protector movement to Stop Line 3, following up on the group of UU and UU-adjacent faith leaders who showed up for the Treaty People Gathering in early June.
What is Line 3? It’s an extension of a fossil-fuel pipeline that—if completed—would stretch roughly 340 miles and move up to 760,000 barrels of tar sands oil per day. Not only would this project pose a threat to the Earth’s climate by doubling the amount of planet-heating fuels carried by the current Line 3; it also directly harms Indigenous sovereignty and treaty rights. The Anishinaabe people have protected rights to hunt, fish, gather medicine, and harvest wild rice on the lands the pipeline traverses. Further construction, and the real danger of a catastrophic spill, would gravely violate these rights.
For these reasons, Indigenous water protectors have put out a call for solidarity to shut down Line 3, and UU organizers are working to respond. The UU College of Social Justice and UUSC are collaborating with the UUA, UU Ministry for Earth, UU Young Adults for Climate Justice, and UU Justice Arizona to not only enable the young adult delegation to travel to Minnesota, but also to support them in whatever actions they take—be it from risking arrest to doing chores in the long-term camps.
“As a Unitarian Universalist young adult, I know at the core of me that Life itself is on the line right now. I have a moral obligation to do everything in my power to shift the story and the trajectory of humanity, healing our relationship to Life and living on this planet. Thirty to fifty percent of all species on Earth could go extinct by 2050, if we do not make this change. I live my faith by joining this delegation to show up for the treaty rights and leadership of the Anishinaabe; for the water and the wild rice, for climate stability, for all our relations,” says Aly Tharp, UU Ministry for Earth Director of Programs and Partnerships.
UUSC calls on all our members and supporters to take action in solidarity with the young adult delegation, as well as our partner Honor the Earth and other Indigenous water protectors resisting the pipeline. Wherever we are in the country, we can call on our elected officials to withdraw support for this pipeline and revoke the permits that allow construction to go forward. President Biden has ended fossil fuel projects in the past, such as the Keystone XL pipeline. He can and should do the same now. Take action here to help stop Line 3.
About UUSC: Guided by the belief that all people have inherent worth and dignity, UUSC advances human rights globally by partnering with affected communities who are confronting injustice, mobilizing to challenge oppressive systems, and inspiring and sustaining spiritually grounded activism for justice. We invite you to join us in this journey toward realizing a better future!
Image Credit: UU College of Social Justice