LAWN, W.V. (WSET) — Two Mountain Valley Pipeline protesters were arrested Friday morning after reportedly locking themselves to drilling equipment.
The incident happened early Friday morning in Lawn, West Virginia, in Greenbrier County, where the Mountain Valley Pipeline crosses underneath Interstate 64.
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Activist group Appalachians Against Pipelines says the protesters halted work at the site for more than two hours before two protesters were extracted and arrested around 8:30.
By 9:30, bail had not been set.
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"In the expansive timeline of industrial extraction, halting work for a single day might feel molecular, but today’s action is anything but isolated," stated one of the people locked to the drill. "Today’s action stands in community with all that has transpired, all those that will continue to resist, painting a larger picture of the resiliency of grassroots organizing in Appalachia, the overwhelming value of direct action in rural spaces. As I write and as you read, 303 miles of Appalachian soil is being held captive by the Mountain Valley Pipeline. As pipeline construction intrudes upon the ground under the pads of our feet, we are reminded of the long history of rural communities, of Appalachian flora and fauna reduced to a mere commodity for the sake of bolstering a capitalistic agenda."
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The other person who took action today stated: "Today I am taking action against the MVP. For me, the only option is to take direct action against this pipeline which is tearing through the beautiful mountains of Appalachia. I am taking action today not only to oppose this pipeline, but as a part of a broader movement working to abolish the systems of capitalism, white supremacy, cis hetero patriarchy, and all the other systems that are destroying this earth. I am also taking this action in solidarity with Indigenous water protectors and allies fighting Enbridge’s Line 3 up in so-called Minnesota."
Neither protester has been identified, and law enforcement has not yet commented on the arrests.
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The Mountain Valley Pipeline is a 42-inch diameter, 300-plus mile, fracked gas pipeline that runs from northern West Virginia to southern Virginia, with a 70-mile extension into North Carolina.