Opinion

Winona LaDuke: Energy project threatens Ojibwe ricing tradition






A map of the Sandpiper pipeline route through treaty lands in Minnesota. Larger Image

Activist Winona LaDuke of Honor the Earth explains the battle against pipeline through treaty territory in Minnesota:
On an overcast and quiet midday afternoon, 50 or so Anishinaabeg from ricing families and their friends gathered at Big Bear Landing on the shore of Big Rice Lake. Advertisement

It is 138 years to the day of the infamous Battle of the Little Big Horn. Some would say that the odds were not great for the Lakota at that point, and some might say the same now for the Anishinaabeg. The Ojibwe hold ricing poles, knockers and carry their canoes to the lake, carefully placing them on the edge.

Michael Dahl has called us together to talk about our manoomin, our wild rice and this lake. This lake is the most bountiful wild rice lake in Minnesota. It is four miles long and two miles wide – a solid bed of wild rice on a good year. There is nothing like it. Really.

June, or the Strawberry Moon in Ojibwe country, has been good for the Enbridge corporation. The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission approved the Alberta Clipper expansion through Leech Lake, clearing one more obstacle for the company, to proceed in doubling their tar sands oil pipeline from 400 to 800,000 barrels per day.

Get the Story:
Winona LaDuke: trip to Big Bear Landing for ricing (The Park Rapids Enterprise 7/5)

Related Stories:
Honor the Earth weighs next move in fight over pipeline route (05/22)
Honor the Earth challenges pipeline route through treaty lands (05/08)