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Rebekah Olstad's blog

Oakland waterfront

Earthjustice is proud to partner with organizations that are challenging unjust and polluting infrastructure projects that threaten the wellbeing of their communities, the land and wildlife. In Oakland, California, Earthjustice is working with the Asian Pacific Environmental Network (APEN) and others to fight against a proposal to export coal through a terminal on the Oakland waterfront. APEN organizes local Asian community members to advance an agenda of environmental, social and economic justice.

The 2012 Richmond refinery fire at sunset.

Isabella Zizi is a 21-year-old resident of Richmond, California, an active environmentalist and one of the youngest members of the advocacy group Idle No More SF Bay. Zizi’s background is Northern Cheyenne, Arikara, Muskogee Creek and Italian. Born and raised in Richmond, she witnessed the Chevron refinery explosion in 2012 that sent more than 15,000 people to local hospitals in respiratory distress.

Houseboats sit in the drought lowered waters of Oroville Lake, near Oroville, California on October 30, 2014.

California’s record-breaking drought has reignited old feuds about who can lay claim to water in the thirstiest state. In 2014 Earthjustice published a photo essay highlighting the stories of state residents left high and dry as Big Ag lobbies for more water to be pumped to industrial-scale farms in arid regions of the San Joaquin Valley.

Activists who oppose Royal Dutch Shell's plans to drill for oil in the Arctic Ocean prepare their kayaks for the "Paddle in Seattle" protest in May 2015, in Seattle. These initial protests have sparked similar #ShellNo kayaktivism around the U.S.

This past weekend, groups all around the country took a stand (and raised a paddle) to protect the Arctic Ocean. July 18 was a national day of action that included rallies, speeches by a U.S. Senator and Congresswoman and groups of kayaktavists who hit the water to say “Shell No” to Arctic drilling. Here are some of our favorite moments captured on social media. (You might recognize a few familiar faces, too!)

The Refinery Healing Walk is an opportunity to bring people together to combat air pollution issues.

Last April, a group of nearly 40 people gathered on a Saturday afternoon to walk 14 miles through suburban sprawl and next to freeways, isolated parking lots, rail tracks and oil refineries. The first in a series of “Refinery Corridor Healing Walks,” the purpose was to walk in prayer and conversation for a safe future for all life on the planet, and to bring attention to the dangers that refineries pose to surrounding communities in the San Francisco Bay Area. 


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The views and opinions expressed in this blog do not necessarily represent the opinion or position of Earthjustice or its board, clients, or funders.