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Tribal Luminaries Participate in Massive Climate Change, Keystone Rally in Washington

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Famed Native author Louise Erdrich is among the notables flocking to Washington, D.C. for a February 17 rally demanding governmental action on climate change.

She is one of 72 people from Minnesotan who was scheduled to board what activists have dubbed the Earth Train from the Amtrak station in St. Paul, the Pioneer-Press reported. They are not only advocating against climate change but also demanding an end to the Keystone XL pipeline that cuts from the oil sands of Alberta, Canada to the Gulf of Mexico.

“This is not an ordinary rally. This is a rally that can change the course of our country’s position on climate change,” said Rev. Yearwood in a video urging attendance.

“This rally is in my opinion the most important rally in our movement. This is as important when Dr. King marched in 1963,” he said, except more so. “It’s not just about equality. It’s about existence.”

Other prominent Native leaders attending include Chief Jacqueline Thomas, Saik'uz First Nation, an outspoken opponent of the Northern Gateway pipeline from the oil sands through British Columbia, and environmental activist Crystal Lameman of Beaver Lake Cree First Nations. 

They are just some of the 20,000 people that the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) anticipates will show up. More information is available at the organizing site, Forward On Climate.