UPDATE (Aug 22, 2011): Bill and all the activists arrested on Saturday have been released.

UPDATE (Aug 29, 2011): Now more than 380 people have been arrested.

Dear friends,

We thought you should know that as of today over 150 people, including Bill McKibben, have been arrested at the White House.

Bill is still in jail as I type this — but here in DC spirits are high and resolve is strengthening with each passing hour. For the past three days, large groups of Americans have joined a non-violent civil disobedience action at the White House. The goal is to send President Obama a simple message: “Stop the Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline.” The protests will continue over the next two weeks — and what the activists in DC need more than anything is the knowledge that there is a massive global movement backing them up. 

There are three ways that you can stand in solidarity from wherever you are:

1. Sign the petition to President Obama to reject the Keystone XL Pipeline — we’ve already rocketed past our initial goal of 35,000 signatures and are hoping to add as many names as possible before we deliver it to White House officials on September 3rd.

2. Send in a solidarity message or photo to the people taking action at the White House.

3. Take part in Moving Planet — a worldwide climate rally on September 24 — and move beyond all fossil fuels in the loudest, most beautiful way possible. 

You probably know that building the Keystone XL pipeline is a terrible idea. The oil it will carry from Canada’s tar sands will travel all the way from northern Alberta to the Gulf of Mexico. Think: oil spilling all over America's heartland. Think: way more CO2 all over the atmosphere, since the tar sands are among the most carbon-intensive of all the fossil fuels. With so many strikes against the Keystone pipeline, it’s understandable that folks are so fired up and willing to put their bodies on the line to stop it. 350.org isn’t organizing the action in DC, but there’s a separate website to find out more about the two weeks of daily sit-ins at the White House (today was just day #3).

When nominated for President in 2008, Barack Obama promised that his administration would ensure “the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal…and that our nation [would be] restored as the last, best hope on Earth.” It’s not a protest I feel like I’ve been watching unfold here in DC — but a big and beautiful reminder of that vision.

With rising hope from DC,

Will Bates for the 350.org Team

P.S. Our friends in DC just made an beautiful video about Day 1 of the action — click here to watch it and be sure to share it with your friends on Twitter and Facebook.

P.P.S. For an extra dose of inspiration, check out a few of my favorite photos from the protest:


Standing Strong on Day 3! (Photo Credit: Josh Lopez)


Media Take Opportunity To Capture A Piece of The Action at the White House Protest of Keystone XL (Photo Credit: Josh Lopez)

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