Global Justice Ecology Project and Bill McKibben to Co-Present Activist Award on Eve of Trump Inauguration

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Buffalo, NY – Global Justice Ecology Project, an international non-profit organization based in Buffalo, NY, joins climate activist and author Bill McKibben to co-present a prestigious activism award in Burlington, VT on Jan. 19, the eve of the inauguration of, and protests against, Donald Trump.

The Burlington, VT Peace and Justice Center’s Ed Everts Award for Peace and Social Justice will be awarded to the climate justice action group Rising Tide Vermont by Global Justice Ecology Project’s co-Directors Anne Petermann and Orin Langelle, along with McKibben.

Rising Tide Vermont was selected to receive the award for to their work against dangerous pipelines in Vermont. Global Justice Ecology Project trained many activists over the years, some of which went on to found Rising Tide Vermont.

Sophia Wilansky, a young woman who nearly lost her arm after being hit with a concussion grenade at a Standing Rock, ND action in November, was arrested during a Rising Tide Vermont protest against a Vermont Gas pipeline in Williston, VT last June. Sophia locked herself to an excavator to block the pipeline dig site and was cut off the equipment with a rotator saw.

Many activists from Rising Tide VT went to Standing Rock in support of the Indigenous Water Protectors there.

Long-time forest protection and Indigenous rights activists, Petermann and Langelle were based in Vermont for 21 years before relocating to Buffalo in 2012. They were key organizers of the international climate justice movement beginning in 2004, organizing meetings, actions and press conferences at annual UN Climate Conferences on six continents every year from 2004 (Buenos Aires, Argentina) through 2011 (Durban, South Africa).

Global Justice Ecology Project also partners with the Indigenous Environmental Network who are some of the organizers in Standing Rock. GJEP recently became involved with the Buffalo Stands with Standing Rock group and is working in opposition to the Northern Access Pipeline. The pipeline would send fracked gas from the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania through Western New York, eventually connecting with the TransCanada Pipeline system after crossing the Niagara River.

GJEP is a founder and the international coordinator of the Campaign to STOP Genetically Engineered Trees, the goal of which is preventing the planting and use of genetically engineered trees globally. The Campaign includes organizations, scientists and Indigenous Peoples from four continents. Its next global meeting will be in Santiago, Chile in March 2017.

Global Justice Ecology Project moved its international office from Hinesburg, VT to Buffalo in 2012. A portion of the GJEP space has been dedicated to the ¡Buen Vivir! Gallery for Contemporary Art, which was opened in 2014 and directed by Langelle.

Langelle trained as a photojournalist at the International Center of Photography in Manhattan in the 1970s. Petermann, an East Aurora native, received her degree in Biology at SUNY Geneseo in the late-80s. The two have been working together for 25 years with numerous campaign victories.

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