Actresses Shailene Woodley, Rosario Dawson and Riley Keough have joined other celeb voices in protesting against the Dakota Access pipeline, recently approved by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers without a full environmental assessment.
“It is our responsibility to learn the narrative in which Native Americans recall their own history and are walking their own history, and this is a beautiful opportunity for that,” said Woodley, according to the celebrity website Look to the Stars. “Because not only are we saying enough is enough to the fossil-fuel industry but we’re saying enough is enough to silence. That’s why this fight is so profound to me.”
The Divergent movie series star traveled to Washington to protest outside the White House alongside Native youth who had run a 2,000-mile relay from North Dakota, posting video updates to her Facebook page. She also joined the run for two days and protested along with 225 Standing Rock Sioux members and supporters next to the construction site, the Bismarck Tribune reported. Keough, an actress and model, was with Woodley and the youth runners as well. Several people were arrested, though Woodley and Keough were not among them.
Woodley and Keough also joined Dawson and other protesters at an event in Union Square in New York City to denounce the $3.4 billion pipeline, which would stretch 1,168 miles through four states and carry volatile Bakken crude. That’s about as long as the Keystone XL pipeline, though it has received much less notice. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers approved Dakota Access in July with nary an environmental evaluation, let alone extensive tribal consultation, against the advice of at least three federal agencies.
Other celebrities have also joined forces with the Standing Rock Sioux against the pipeline. Back in May, three stars of Justice League—Jason Momoa, Ezra Miller and Ray Fisher—published messages in support of Standing Rock and in protest of the pipeline on social media channels. Leonardo DiCaprio has also voiced support.
The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe is suing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for its approval last month. The pipeline would cross the Missouri River, the tribe’s main source of drinking water. Other tribes are considering similar moves.
“I really hope that that’s the beginning of piercing through whatever barriers are stopping them from making the right decision for our humans, our bodies, our planet, our people, our animals, our life, our air, our water, over profits and business as usual,” Dawson said of the D.C. protests at the New York City gathering, which was streamed on Facebook. “In the midst of this election cycle, people keep asking, ‘What is next?’ Well, this is what is next. How amazing would it be if we all were to turn our attention to this cause? If we would all show the entire planet that if we stand together, that we can stop something that’s already got the ink drying on it.”