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Abby Rubinson's blog

Ngöbe indigenous people are protesting a dam that will displace their homes.

“It’s been two months,” Ngöbe indigenous leader Weni Bagama told me this week, describing the Ngöbe indigenous community members who are camping alongside the banks of the Tabasará River. They are there in protest of the Barro Blanco dam, which will flood indigenous Ngöbe families—including Ms. Bagama’s—from their land. Aside from homes, a school, and cultural sites, this land of lush, leafy vegetation provides their primary source of food.

Russia is moving ahead with plans to drill in the Arctic (with BP at its side, no less). This is a clear wake-up call: Arctic basin countries need to create an agreement on international environmental standards for the Arctic.

Because oil exploration exposes the Arctic to spills that cross artificial boundaries on a map, international circumpolar environmental standards are critical to help prevent oil spills and respond effectively when they happen (lest we have another Valdez or Deepwater Horizon oil spill on our hands).

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