Raccoon Rebellion Strikes Diamond Pipeline on Christmas

Featured image: Water Protectors from the Raccoon Rebellion-Arkansas Chapter conduct a safety lock-out/tag-out of a Main Operating Valve on the Diamond Pipeline as a Christmas gift to the Natural State.

Editor’s note: This news illustrates how simple, relatively safe, and cost-effective small actions can be.  They simply put locks on a pipeline valve control box.  The company only needs to send an employee out with bolt cutters to undo the action, but it’s a good example of how easy it is to access such equipment, and how easy it would be to cause more lasting effects.

     by Jacques Rogiers / Indybay

On Christmas, with help and assistance from Santa Claus, his reindeer, and mischievous elves, some raccoons from the Arkansas Chapter of the national “Raccoon Rebellion” conducted a safety lockout tag-out on Diamond Pipeline Main Operating Valve (MOV) #2021 east of Jerusalem, Arkansas in accordance with common industrial safety procedures. The Lockout/Tagout devices were placed to prevent access and operation of this hazardous inter-state tool of the extractive, exploitative fossil fuel industry.

Using an eminent domain provision of the State Constitution – created in the last century, the Diamond Pipeline has been drilled, dug, and blasted across the Natural State. Chairman and CEO Greg “Scrooge” Armstrong of Plains-All American (PAA) used every loophole on the books to avoid common sense review, mediation, and mitigation while misrepresenting those that opposed the threat to their water as terrorists.14 Counties, 13 major rivers and creeks, 11 drinking water watersheds, 4 Arkansas NRC Priority Watersheds, 10 Critically Endangered Species, 2 Nuclear reactors as well as major portions of the Arkansas and Mississippi River, 5 Heritage crossing sites, and countless homes, farms and property owners are affected. Any moment now the imported steel from the lowest bidder could break and the ghost of Mayflower past will coil like a black evil spirit – with no emergency plan in place.

This pipeline is unsafe. The continued construction and operation of new fossil fuel infrastructure projects like this and so many others is the TRUE CRIME. We know this from years of extensive monitoring, study, and observation supported with hard evidence–photos, federal regulation, and personal observations by experts. The flora and fauna of the Natural State admire and support the efforts of so many organizations and people that have used every available means to have an open and meaningful dialogue and review. However, we can wait no longer.

Future interventions in the interest of common public safety must occur. In solidarity with the “Rabbit Ridge Resistance” we echo the demands they made before the line went into limited operation.

We demand that Governor Asa Hutchinson:
– Invoke executive authority to halt operation of the Diamond Pipeline for the protection of the people, lands, and wildlife of Arkansas.
– Conduct a complete review of all the information concerning pipeline safety and construction irregularities and hold public meeting in every county affected.
– Conduct complete review of use of law enforcement and security groups in the suppression of lawful 1st Amendment activities associated with protest and opposition to oil and gas industries.
– Invoke a complete moratorium on any OTHER use of eminent domain laws by private utility companies until effective procedures are in place to assess and provide public input to ANY use of those laws.
– Create a bonded, insurance fund to cover ANY potential damage caused by the leak, explosion, or faulty construction by any oil and gas infrastructure project.
–Raccoon Rebellion – Arkansas Chapter

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