In this video Tim DeChristopher shares an overview of the Delta 5 trial, the outcome, implications and his thoughts on how to use civil disobedience as a strategy moving forward.
DeChristopher and the Climate Disobedience Center team supported the Delta 5 during the trial.
For more see Tim DeChristopher’s January 16, 2016 talk “The Power of Civil Disobedience: Awakening Our Spirits to the Challenge of the Climate Crisis” delivered the day after the historic #Delta5 climate trial verdict. The event was sponsored by the Climate Action Team of University Unitarian Church, Seattle. Filmed by Todd Boyle.
This talk has been broken up into short topic focused video clips here.
The following is the full program video including introductions and Q &A after the talk.
Lynnwood, WA: This week history is being made as a group of climate activists are helping to put lack of action on climate change on trial.
According to the Climate Disobedience Center, the five defendants known to supporters as the Delta 5, will call expert witnesses including a co-author of the UN’s intergovernmental panel on climate change report and a rail safety expert, to convince the jury that the threat posed by climate change justifies their acts of civil disobedience.
“There came a point where I could no longer sit back and wait for the politicians to act. I had to put my body on the line to demand not talk, but action on a massive scale to rapidly replace fossil fuels,” said Patrick Mazza, a member of the Delta 5 who has worked for years as an advocate for climate action.
This is the first time a U.S. court has heard a ‘necessity defense’ in a case relating to climate action. The trial is schedule to last the duration of this week.
See the full trial press release.
Before the trial began Monday, Tim DeChristopher of Bidder 70 fame and co-founder of the Climate Disobedience Center supporting the defendants, and defendant Abby Brockway spoke with Democracy Now! about the significance of the case.
Dechristopher said in another Democracy Now interview that the climate movement is increasingly turning towards civil disobedience because “the government is not doing what’s necessary to meet the climate crisis” and that those committing climate related civil disobedience are doing so to “prevent the harm of climate change that really threatens to collapse our entire civilization and cause massive refugees, cause massive starvation and a huge list of extremely serious impacts that we’re trying to stop. So it’s truly a necessity to take that kind of action to stand up to the fossil fuel industry when our government fails to do so.”
DeChristopher is live tweeting from the trial at @DeChristopher.
BREAKING : According to my colleague, climate activist Tim DeChristopher, the judge in the Delta 5 case is allowing the use of the Necessity Defense. This is the legal defense which DeChristopher was denied in his prominent trial for disrupting an illegitimate Bureau of Land Management oil and gas auction in December of 2008. DeChristopher served 20 months for his act of civil disobedience. Updated 1/8/16
Next week, on January 11th, the activists known as the Delta 5 are going to trail for their civil disobedience. A year ago, in September 2014, they blocked a train used to transport oil at the Delta rail yard in Everett, WA.
This is yet another instance of average citizens people like you and me putting their bodies in the way of business as usual for the fossil fuel industry. Perhaps something we all need to be doing as the fossil fuel industry seems “hell bent on killing the planet” to quote Bill McKibben.
In this video the Delta 5 — that’s Abby Brockway, Mike Lapointe, Patrick Mazza, Jackie Minchew, and Liz Spoerri — explain why they took this action.
My colleagues at the new Climate Disobedience Center are supporting the Delta 5 through this trial. See related Detla 5 posts on the center’s website:
Wherever you are, you can help these activists by following the trial, sharing related news, and if you can, support their legal fund.
Look for tweets with hashtag #DELTA5 and retweet. Here are a few to start with:
Share some of the Facebook posts from the Climate Disobedience Center.
Learn more about the Delta 5 case on their website at delta5trial.org.
The day of the September 8, 2014 Lobster Boat Blockade “Climate Trial” of Jay O’Hara and Ken Ward I volunteered to take photographs to share with the media. Many of these photos have been picked up, the most widely circulated a photo featuring District Attorney Sam Sutter holding a Rolling Stone Magazine with Bill McKibben’s article “A Call to Arms.” Continue reading Ken Ward / Jay O’Hara Lobster Blockade Trial Photos