salish sea

Indigenous Protectors Occupy Washington State Capitol demanding declaration of Climate Emergency

OLYMPIA, WA (March 10, 2020)—Hours before sunrise on March 10, 2020 Protectors of The Salish Sea and allies erected two sixteen foot tall Tarpee indigenous structures on the top of the North steps at the Olympia State Capitol demanding that Governor Jay Inslee draft a Climate Emergency Resolution and call for a special session on this 2020 legislative period to deal with the Climate Emergency that Washington State and our world is currently experiencing.

Image:  Protectors of the Salish Sea
Image: Protectors of the Salish Sea

Both of these demands are within legal means of the governor and are both necessary for Washington State. The disruption caused by Climate Change is causing glaciers to become extinct. Rivers are warming and becoming severely, permanently destroyed.

The climate affected estuaries are depleting traditional wild salmon stocks that are detrimental to the remaining 73 Southern Resident Orcas here in our Salish Sea. In a world where a billion natural animals burned to death in Australian Wildfires and the Antarctic recently reached 70 degrees Fahrenheit, we must take immediate action. A total of 11,000 scientists several months ago declared a Global Climate Emergency and the entire confederacy of Alaska Tribes have declared a Climate Emergency. “Our house is on fire and Washington State is not an island and holds a Climate Justice responsibility for a livable planet and a livable future for our salmon, our future and all sacred beings upon Mother Earth” – Aimeé Phair Lummi Nation Tribal member and member of Protectors of The Salish Sea.

The time is now for Washington State to open up a steady dialog around its acceptance of massive fossil-fuel projects such as Tacoma LNG and Kalama Methanol. The time is now to place a moratorium on current and future fossil fuel expansion projects here in what is known as the Evergreen State.

Since last January, growth in the United States and globally of governments declaring Climate Emergencies has skyrocketed from only 233 to over 1,460 as of today in 28 nations. In the U.S. Climate Emergency declarations have grown tremendously from only eight last January to 90 as of today in 24 states. If successful, Washington would become the first state to declare a statewide Climate Emergency.

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