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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Power Shift 2011 Flashmob Shuts Down BP: ‘Don’t Forget The BP Oil Disaster!’

Power Shift 2011 Flashmob Shuts Down BP: ‘Don’t Forget The BP Oil Disaster!’

by Brad Johnson, Wonk Room, Think Progress, April 17, 2011

This afternoon, hundreds of youth climate activists shut down a BP gas station with people power. The flash mob contrasted a joyous and cheerful celebration of the beauty of the Gulf Coast — beach balls, beach chairs, and palm trees — with the devastation caused by the BP oil disaster. In an exclusive interview with ThinkProgress during the protest, Tulane University student Stephanie Stefanski explains why she drove 20 hours from Louisiana to the 2011 Power Shift conference to help to shut down BP and make them pay to restore the Gulf:
There’s still oil on our coast. I saw it two weeks ago, I touched it, I smelled it. It’s still causing massive die offs with dolphins, sea turtles, crustaceans and fish. 
It’s causing public health issues. I’m here to tell everyone this problem is still here one year later. The beaches are still oiled. They’re trying to “make it right” by paying off the community, but it’s still destroyed. The fisheries are damaged. 
There’s no money in, people still don’t trust the seafood. They’re not paying up for their damages.

Stefanski is with the Gulf Restoration Network, which has a national petition to hold President Obama accountable and implement the Oil Spill Commission recommendations to ensure Louisiana and its sister states come back stronger.

One year after the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded, sending 11 men to a fiery grave, BP’s crude and dispersants are still impacting the Gulf and its communities. BP has scored a $10 billion tax refund for its part in cleaning up its toxic crime. On Tax Day, Monday, April 18th, the Gulf Coast Power Shift contingent will take action in front of BP’s lobbying headquarters, and meet with their members of Congress to demand that Congress and the President act now to stop the crisis on America’s Gulf Coast, and make BP truly pay for their disaster.

“Don’t forget the BP oil disaster!” Stefanski concluded.
UPDATEThinkProgress has learned that Power Shift 2011 participants are mobilizing to stage protests across the nation on Wednesday, April 20, to boycott and shut down BP gas stations in their communities to tell President Obama to make BP pay to restore the Gulf.

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