25 Arrested in TransCanada Protest
More than 100 attended this morning's protest of the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline.
More than 100 opponents of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline protested and sung at TransCanada's Northeast Regional Office in Westborough this morning, the second such protest at the Route 9 building this winter.
“If this pipeline is approved and is built, it will put us on a serious path forward to significant climate change,” said Becca Rast, a Brown University senior from Lancaster, Pa.
“For my generation, my peers, I don’t want to see us moving forward on a path to irreversible climate change.”
Police arrested 25 members of the group who had handcuffed themselves together, and charged them with trespassing and disorderly conduct, Police Chief Alan Gordon said in a press release.
The protesters were "blocking the main entry into the office" at 110 Turnpike Road, Suite 203 when police arrived around 10:55 a.m., Gordon said.
"The group was advised that they were trespassing and were subject to arrest if they did not leave voluntarily. Most left the building," he said.
The protest of the Keystone XL Pipeline “from Alberta, Canada to Texas” was the second at TransCanada's Westborough office this winter, Rast said.
Eight people were arrested on Jan. 7.
Today, most of the group, dressed in all black, chanted and sung while police escorted their peers to police cruisers.
Participants also held a coffin "emblazoned with the words “Our Future,” the group said in a press release.
A number of them went to the Westborough Police Station to support those arrested today.
Rast said the 25 who were arrested “really believe that they should put their bodies on the line”
“They’re putting themselves out there,” she said.
“President Obama said in his State of the Union address that we have to take serious action on climate change. If he approves the Keystone XL Pipeline, he will be running over his own legitimacy.”
In a statement, TransCanada spokesman Shawn Howard said that “while protestors staged an event in the building where our offices are located, they did not gain access to our space. We appreciate the efforts of the Westborough Police Department to resolve this peacefully and to ensure that trespassers left the building and private property.”
“This publicity stunt will not provide an American construction worker with a job to provide for their family and their needs. It will not reduce global emissions or the continued need for fossil fuels in the United States. It will not improve the safety of moving a critical product to market. Keystone XL will - and the science and more than five years of environmental reviews continue to confirm this,” the statement says.
“The latest environmental review concluded (again) that the pipeline would have no significant impact on the resources along the route. This really isn’t really about Keystone XL, diluted bitumen, emissions or a substance that is in a particular blend of oil – it’s about a group that wants to end the use of fossil fuels entirely.”
Westborough resident Mike Ferriter said the pipeline TransCanada would build would carry “toxic stuff,” and “they want to ship it from Calgary over to Portland, Maine.”
“Toxic stuff is toxic stuff,” Ferriter said.
“They have so much greed, they want to make so much money, that they’re willing to sacrifice our futures so that they can make money.”
Worcester resident Scott Schaeffer-Duffy held a “Stop the XL Pipeline. Save the Earth” sign during the protest. He held a similar sign outside Westborough District Court while the Jan. 7 protesters were arraigned.
“I think people are interested and people are becoming gradually more aware of the consequences of this entire project,” Schaeffer-Duffy said.
“I think people are becoming more aware of the economic promise of jobs and the promise of that this is going to help us become more energy independent are inflated, and that the environmental impact is so severe that more people are realizing, ‘We’ll take a pass on this one.'”
- Deborah J. Bernstein, 68, of 60 Pinedale Ave., Billerica
- Rachel Soule, 22, of 69 Conwell Ave., Apt. 2, Somerville
- Eli Gerzon, 29, of 76 Bartlett Ave., Arlington
- Claire Sowa, 19, of 230 Fenway, Boston
- Joshua G. Krieble, 20, of 20 Evans Way, Boston
- Lisa Young, 24, of 8 Portland St., Apt. 201, Worcester
- Mark Files Schwaller, 27, of 7 Bynner St., Jamaica Plain
- Levon A. Chorbajian, 70, of 79 Gray St., Billerica
- Peter H. Malagodi, 38, of 108 Readville St., Hyde Park
- Krista L. Shugart, 20, of 152 Green Road, Sparta, N.J.
- Sophie Robinson, 24, of 23 Harrison St., Apt. 2, Somerville
- William Pearl, 20, of 85 Packard Ave., Apt. 212LH, Medford
- Brynn Nicole Daniels, 21, of 537 Pat Haven Drive., Pittsburgh, Pa.
- Daniel L. Jubelirer, 20, of 6007 Hathaway Lane, Chapel Hill, N.C.
- Heather L. Marsh, 19, of 88 Brown St., Pittsfield
- Anna M. Lello-Smith, 19, of 35 Woodlawn Ave., Northampton
- Rachel A. Bishop, 21, of 288 Williams St., Providence, R.I.
- Anna Shireman-Grabowski, 19, of P.O. Box 3794, Middlebury, Vt.
- Samuel Koplinka-Loehr, 21, of 124 Crest Lane, Ithaca, N.Y.
- Christopher Corrigan, 21, of 2020 Ridgefield Court, Rochester Hills, Mich.
- Molly P. Pearlman, 19, of 15 Leatherstocking St., Cooperstown, N.Y.
- Gregory D. Reinauer, 28, of 110 Longsdale St., Dorchester
- Jay A. Saper, 22, of 302 Weybridge St., Middlebury, Vt.
- Lucy Whipps, 20, of 9038 North Fortune Ave., Portland, Ore.
- John M. Tabor, 18, of 432 East 9th St., Apt. 2, New York, N.Y.