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For Immediate Release    
November 6th, 2015

Press contacts: Dallas Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network, 708-515-6158, ienpipeline@igc.org
Harold Frazier, Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, 605-964-4155
Lewis Grassrope, Lower Brule Sioux Tribe, 605-208-0880
David Archambault Jr., Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, (701) 854-7560
A.Gay Kingman, Great Plains Tribal Chairmans Assoc., (605)-484-3036
Paula Antoine, Shielding the People No KXL Spirit Camp, (605) – 828-0740
Faith Spotted Eagle, Ihantonwan Treaty Council, (605)-481-0416
Frank Waln, franciswaln@gmail.com Aldo Seoane, Wica Agli, (605)-319-8151
Joye Braun, Cheyenne River Grassroots, jmbraun57625@gmail.com

Tribal, Grassroots, & Treaty Leaders Respond to President Obama Rejecting Keystone XL Pipeline

rejectandprotectvictoryWashington D.C. – President Obama has rejected the Keystone XL cross-border application filed by TransCanada to the U.S. State Department. This is a huge victory for the Tribal Nations and communities along its proposed route that have been fighting this dirty tar sands project for the past seven years. This rejection is a sincere affirmation of the struggle to protect the sacredness of Mother Earth and her life blood, the water. The following are response statements by Tribal, grassroots and treaty leaders to President Obama’s rejection of Keystone XL cross-border permit application:

Dallas Goldtooth, Indigenous Environmental Network KXL Campaign Organizer, “This is a tremendous victory for all the pipeline fighters who have spent several years fighting the TransCanada “black snake”, Keystone XL! The President’s decision is a clear affirmation of our struggle to defend the sacredness of Mother Earth and to protect the future generations of all our relatives, human and non-human alike. We celebrate this as a win and a powerful step to the greater goals of keeping fossil fuels in the ground and shutting down the tar sands at the source!”

Harold Frazier, Chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, “On behalf of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe we are grateful to President Obama for rejecting the Keystone XL pipeline and give thanks to everyone who helped make this happen. We must continue to fight this war against tar sands. We need to stay united with all our Native brothers and sisters here  in Canada, and around the world to stop the pollution of our water so our young people can grow up to live good healthy lives.”

Lewis Grassrope, Chairman of the Lower Brule Sioux Tribe, “In the greatest effort of all indigenous people’s to stop the kxl pipeline our prayers were heard. As its a great day for all as our connections spiritually were answered. Thank you to all for the perseverance,  fortitude, humility,  and courageous acts to stop this black snake from coming onto our lands. One giant step for our children’s future. A great victory today for all indigenous peoples.”.

David Archambault Jr., Chairman of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe, “The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe applauds President Obama’s decision to deny the permit to the KXL pipeline project. After several years of vigorous debate by many parties, the president resolved the issue by focusing on the big picture. President Obama’s decision is consistent with Tribal values that respect the environment and honor our roles as guardians of our children’s’ futures.”

A. Gay Kingman, Executive Director of Great Plains Tribal Chairmans Association, “Wopila President Obama for rejecting the Keystone XL. Wopila to all our Relatives who stood strong to oppose the KXL, But, keep the coalitions together because there are more Pipelines proposed and we must protect our Mother Earth for our Future Generations.

Paula Antoine, Chairwoman of  Rosebud NO KXL Spirit Camp, Oyate Wahacanka Woecun (Shielding the People), “We, along with the Rosebud Sioux Tribe, are extremely honored by President Obama’s decision to reject the Keystone XL pipeline. We have stood united with all those who protect Unci Maka. Our children’s grandchildren will benefit and remember this day as a victory! We affirm our rights as the original caretakers and stewards of the land, resources and oyate. We remain, in solidarity shielding the People. One heart ~ one mind ~ one prayer.”

Faith Spotted Eagle, Ihanktowan Treaty Council Spokesperson, “This is what unity, hard work and breaking down barriers looks like….all for protecting sacred water and land for the generations. Today we stand in thankfulness for Obama, adopted son of the Crow Nation. We stood united in this struggle, Democrat, Republican, Native, Cowboy, Rancher, landowners, urban warriors, grandmas and grandpas, children….. and through this fight against KXL we have come to see each other in a new better, stronger way!”

Frank Waln, Sicangu Lakota, Music Producer and Artist, “For those of us whose homes were on the frontlines of this proposed pipeline, this is a huge step forward. Our efforts to resist all forms of colonization, including natural energy extraction on Indigenous lands are not in vain. I commend all my relatives who have dedicated their time, energy and lives to stopping this pipeline, when society and the government told us otherwise. Indigenous nations are rising. This is only the beginning!”

Aldo Seoane, Wica Agli, “We are excited by the president’s decision to reject Keystone XL. The project not only would have put the environment in harms way but it would have also put the women and children along the pipeline route at a higher risk of domestic and sexual violence. We are encouraged by the president’s choice of people and the environment over politics and big oil.”

Joye Braun, Community Organizer Cheyenne River Sioux reservation, “Today marks a historic day for the people of the Oceti Sakowin, and our allies. I say thank you to President Obama, and Secretary Kerry for seeing the truth behind the Keystone XL pipeline and rejecting the black snake. We must stay vigilant against tar sands and continue our support to our First Nation cousins in Canada who are on the frontline of this world disaster. We will continue to pray and support the fight against tar sands. ” Joye Braun


President Obama Rejects Keystone XL – Indigenous Environmental Network Responds


“In the fight against Keystone XL our efforts as Indigenous peoples, whether Lakota, Dakota, Assiniboine, Ponca, Cree, Dene or other has always been in the defense of Mother Earth and the sacredness of the water. Today, with this decision we feel those efforts have been validated. With the rejection of Keystone XL we have not only protected the sacredness of the land and water we have also helped our Cree & Dene relatives at the source take one step closer to shutting down the tar sands. The black snake, Keystone XL, has been defeated and best believe we will dance to our victory!” Read more.

IEN Responds to TransCanada Request for State Dept to “Suspend” KXL Application


“We see this as a last ditch effort for the corporation to avoid a rejection of its presidential permit application and is a clear stall strategy that hopes for a supportive president from the 2016 elections. This dirty tar sands pipeline has met immense organized resistance from the Dene, Cree and Metis first nations at its source, thru the traditional lands of the Oceti Sakowin, also known as the Great Sioux Nation, and from the Ponca people of the southern great plains. This grassroots effort,coupled with alliances with non-native landowners helped the fight against Keystone XL become the marquee fight for the US Climate Movement. Read more.

Indigenous Environmental Network Responds to KXL Victory in Nebraska

Jim Tarnick, a farmer near Fullerton, NE and one of the landowner-plaintiffs suing TransCanada over eminent domain threats (Photo by Mary Ann Andrei)

September 30, 2015 – Yesterday, TransCanada announced that it was “revamping” its Nebraska strategy in the effort to build the Keystone XL pipeline by withdrawing an eminent-domain lawsuit against over 100 Nebraska landowners along the project’s proposed route. Public opposition, increased legal expenses and the likely loss of a its lawsuit against the Nebraska landowners have forced the company to take drastic measures to keep its dirty tar sands pipeline project afloat. The corporation stated that it will instead file an application for a state permit with the Nebraska Public Service Commission (PSC), a process that can take at least a year.

President Obama has yet to make a decision on the presidential permit for Keystone XL. A permit rejection by Obama will automatically kill the pipeline project, nationally and on a state-level. Read more.

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