Unist’ot’en Camp: Holding Their Ground Against Oil & Gas Pipelines
Since 2009, the Unist'ot'en clan and its supporters have occupied a camp that is blocking proposed oil and gas pipelines in northern British Columbia, Canada.
Since 2009, the Unist’ot’en clan and its supporters have occupied a camp that is blocking proposed oil and gas pipelines in northern British Columbia, Canada. In the summer of 2015, oil company workers regularly attempted to enter the indigenous group’s territory, and a growing police presence raised tensions about the possibility of a raid on the camp.
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Over the past four years, the Unist'ot'en clan of the Wet’suwet’en nation have literally built a strategy to keep three proposed oil and gas pipelines from crossing their land.
The Unist’ot’en camp in North-Western British Colombia, Canada, is front and centre in a global battle for climate and energy justice. Since 2011 they have been maintaining a check-point controlling access through their territory to stop government and industry plans to build several gas and oil pipelines through their territory. These pipelines form part of an energy corridor that will serve to unlock the vast energy reserves of the tar sands and transport fracked gas with disastrous implications for the climate. The camp was established to oppose these projects, to defend the sacred headwaters, the salmon that spawn there and to maintain their autonomy over their unceded lands. This video, filmed at the camp in 2013, reveals how the Unist’ot'en camp is succeeding in stopping up to 7 pipelines, holding up billions in investment and keeping millions of barrels (and cubic metres) of fossil fuels under the ground. It also show how the camp, beyond being a simple movement of resistance is creating a new intentional community, informed by a millennia old relationship with the territory and natural law, but through a constant process of re-iminagination. As of Fall 2015, the camp continues on high alert amidst multiple incursions from the companies trying to build the pipelines. Yet while under attack, the camp enjoys wide support and solidarity. As this video highlights, the Unist’ot’en form part of a networked "corridor or resistance” of numerous justice movements who are increasingly willing to take action to oppose extreme energy projects and who are building energy sovereignty from the ground up. Welcome to the gateway of meaningful decolonization Corridors of Resistance is an EJOLT Video directed by Leah Temper, edited by Siobhan McKeon and Claudia Medina with camera by Fiona Becker and Leah Temper.
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