In the context of the unprecedented and urgent human-made climate crisis and its terrifying – and already noticeable – consequences, we are all on the frontline.
From extraction, to combustion, and all along the way – the fossil fuel industry’s profit driven nature enacts its abusive relationship to our planet and our communities. Climate change is the ultimate expression of this exploitative relationship; we are dangerously changing this world. If we are serious about reducing greenhouse gas emissions and sustaining life as we know it on Earth, the vast majority of the known fossil fuels must be kept underground; permanently. By promoting the combustion of carbon intensive natural resources, this industry, and all who prop it up, are emptying our collective future; opening our commons to commodification, exploitation, and elimination – as if it was theirs for the taking. We, as a complex and interdependent multi-species entity commonly known as humans who operate within an interconnected and finite planet, are ready to move beyond the legacy of exploitation and imperialism, colonization and domination.
The threat is advancing. The proposed business-as-usual industrial projects along the Hudson River have both local and global implications; every act of resistance to these controversial projects is also an act of planetary solidarity with human and other-than-human communities already bearing the burdens of the climate crisis. In the Hudson River Valley we see these local-global connections most clearly with the newest series of dangerous proposals by Global Partners to create a “virtual pipeline” of trains and boats that would increase transport of fracked Bakken crude from North Dakota and crude oil (potentially from Alberta’s Tar Sands) to ports in Albany and Newburgh/New Windsor, and onto oil tankers and out to open waters. A spill would mean disaster for the Hudson River ecosystem and the human and other-than-human communities along its shore, and what isn’t spilled means disaster for our climate and all of the Earth’s inhabitants as we know it. This is a Dantesque lose-lose situation.
Along the rising tides of the Hudson River there are many struggles opposing these dangerous and harmful industrial projects. SeaChange will become a temporary nomadic marine sustainable community whose voyage through the Hudson River aims to weave these many points of resistance together, convening feasts and dialogues to open a channel for conversation about what is causing our local, global, ecological, and social degradation while articulating a local movement that will no longer stand for any pollution of the river or the atmosphere that sustains us. Our ecological commons must be actively protected.
On the SeaChange Climate Justice Voyage, we follow the path of Global Partners’ proposed “virtual pipeline”; connecting the dots between local social and environmental struggles, water, energy and climate change. We will replace the explosive trains and boats with a migratory platform for community dialogue – asserting the right that communities should be empowered to make their own decisions about what directly affects them, and lifting up the voices from the communities already most impacted by these processes. This journey is intended to create an intimate space for personal and collective transformation as we strengthen our networks of resistance in this watershed world.
We are living in extraordinary times. This is a moment in human history in which the numerous crises – climate, energy, biodiversity, socio-economic, political and cultural – are converging, and literally every living being on the planet feels the effects. All over North America, communities are organizing to prevent further extraction and transport of fossil fuels such as fracked Bakken crude gas or toxic Tar Sands oil; understanding that their local struggle is part of an urgent global fight to respond and adapt to runaway climate change, to control all our own future and to build the resilient world we wish to see. The climate crisis offers a unique opportunity for radical societal change and a way to ground multispecies communities in deeper relationships to each other and to our Earth. All over the world, people are organizing both locally and globally, together, to achieve this. SeaChange: We All Live Downstream.