Congratulations to the wonderful Kim Slater who ran then length of the pipeline and visited communities across Northern BC to discuss our energy future. A marathon a day for 47 days is an incredible achievement! Thank you Kim for your dedication, support and enthusiasm! Read more from Kim below.
Band Together BC is complete!
I’ve just returned from my journey- 47 days and 1177 km across BC connecting with people about pipeline alternatives and clean energy. Along the way, I met with individuals and community groups that had a lot of great ideas for how we can collectively lessen our dependency on fossil fuels and avoid the inevitable disaster that will follow piping raw bitumen across the province and along our coast. Much of this dialogue centred around what can be done locally, and each community expressed values related to their health, security, community, First Nations cultures and ways of life, and the land, water and fish. These values were conveyed in soft and passionate tones, over the dinner table, at gatherings, and at the JRP hearing I attended. Many of the ideas for protecting these values focused on building community resiliency. This resiliency would come from community members building strong bonds with one another, diversification of the local economy, local food production, and investment in renewable technology and low carbon transportation options and it would make the Northern Gateway pipeline a lot less attractive for those that would be swayed by the (empty) promise of jobs. It would also build capacity in communities for defining their own futures. Transition Town provides an excellent model for how this transition can be initialized and I was grateful for learning a bit about if from Transition groups in Williams Lake and Prince Rupert.
I also shared Tides Canada’s recommendations for making this transition contained in their fantastic report A New Energy Vision for Canada (http://tidescanada.org/energy/newenergy/). I was delighted when Quesnel, Terrace and the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako endorsed this vision.
If there is a single message that I can share about my time in the North it is that people there love their home and will do whatever it takes to protect it. It is this love that is fuelling the resistance to the Enbridge project and it is powerful. It deserves to be respected and celebrated. It is the heart of a grassroots movement that I hope will swell and become the foundation for the positive change that we so desperately need. My experience has made me more convinced than ever that we have the capacity to both adapt and to change our world- for good. We must work together and it will take courage, but we can do it. It is already happening.
I find myself now in a time of personal transition. I am reflecting on my journey and envisioning the next chapter. I’m looking for ways of best communicating my experience and the stories I heard along the way, for growing the network of people interested in making the transition to a clean energy future and for pressuring our government to adopt a national energy strategy that provides prosperity and energy security while addressing climate change and our environment. Have ideas? Let me know!
In the coming weeks I will be uploading photos onto my Flickr account (link will be on the website) and compiling the video interviews into a video essay. I am happy to say the blog is complete. Please check it out: www.bandtogetherbc.com
I’m also really excited to announce that Band Together t-shirts that read: “Spill Compassion Instead” are available for sale at: http://www.niceshirt.org/shop/index.php/?___store=bandtogether.
The Delica is also for sale. It was a great vehicle that carried me safely across the province and home. The engine was rebuilt before I left and it was converted to run on waste veggie oil (also runs on regular diesel), so I’m asking $11,000. Please let me know if you or someone you know are interested! Once the van is sold, I will be able to donate to Pacific Wild- so please help!
As for how I am doing, I am well. My body held up remarkably well, with only a bit of swelling in my foot and minor shin splint in the end. I think having the support of so many people before and during the campaign really kept my spirits high and body strong. Thank you to the hundreds of people that donated and to Fruv for sponsoring me. I carried you all with me- both on the Delica (I made a thank you sign for the window) and in my heart (I meditated on everyone during my run as was promised in the “perks”). Thanks to all of the people and groups that organized gatherings, promoted them, and for the donations of food and supplies. Thanks to the kind people that opened their homes to us. Thanks to all of the donations of waste veggie oil. And especially thank you to my incredible support team (drivers, massage therapists, cooks, filmers and photographers)- at home and on the road. A big thanks to Nate and my family for their support too!
If you have Skype yoga coming, please give me a shout to arrange a time: 604-698-7697. I am moving to Pemberton and will have space there and am also happy to do private classes in Whistler, Squamish and Vancouver.