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Katie Bielicki

Delaware State University, USA

Title: Why do we care? Native americans and the keystone pipeline XL

Biography

Katie Bielicki is a sophomore in Natural Resource Program majoring in Wildlife Management in Delaware State University. She is a treasurer for the Wildlife Society. She graduated from High School from St. Georges Technical High School in 2010 with Biotechnology background. She is involved in the research project to observe and monitor bluebird boxes and the occupancy for different bird species as a summer intern.

Abstract

The growing demand for new fossil fuel sources has caused the landscape to be uprooted with devastating consequences to the environment and the associated communities. The Oil industry and our government have conspired to escalate the exportation of tar sands from Alberta, Canada to refineries and ports in the United States by way of the Keystone Pipelines. Although the latest connector pipeline has been marketed as providing jobs and lowering gas prices, the environmental risks associated with the Keystone Pipeline XL outweigh any economic benefit. Native Americans have a strong traditional connection with Mother Earth and they can foresee what will happen if the pipeline is built. Oil spills, land fragmentation, and exploitation threaten the relationship between the Native American spiritual being and their natural world as it has in Alaska, the Gulf of Mexico and in so many other disasters. For many, the construction of the Keystone Pipeline XL portends the destruction of everything they believe in and worked for. Now the people are finding the power of their voices to fight for Mother Earth. May we be inspired by their awareness and sense of responsibility.

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