DAVENPORT, Iowa (KWQC) – Demonstrators in the Quad Cities are making sure their voices are being heard as they take a stand against the Dakota Access Oil Pipeline. After weeks of hearing about tensions escalating, many want to show their support for those on the front line and share why they too are against it.
A group gathered Wednesday at LaFayette Park in Davenport. With signs in hand they huddled under umbrellas to wait for some rain to pass.
“I think everybody should care that it affects the Mississippi river, it affects our drinking water, it affects our quality of air, it affects the wildlife here in our community,” said Melisa Marroquin, a rally organizer.
The oil pipeline situation all hits close to home for Josie Ironshield of the Sioux Tribe.
“We’re originally from Standing Rock. I have my aunties, uncles, and grandmas, my brother, my sister are still up there,” she said. “My sister is actually on the line right now as we speak.”
Demonstrators set out on their march and pounded the pavement for several blocks and onto Centennial Bridge. Along the way they chanted in unison.
“I think people all over the country are standing up right now,” said Rev. Rich Hendricks.
Many are glad for the turn out and say they think movements like this can raise awareness no matter the distance from the pipeline project. The DAPL is expected to carry nearly half a million barrels of crude oil daily through several states, including Iowa and Illinois.
For many demonstrators, it’s more than a fight against where it’s supposed to go. The ultimate goal is to have drilling discontinued altogether.
“It’s one thing to divert, which is fine. But it’s another thing to keep polluting. Fossil fuels are dead. It’s time for us to make the necessary changes so that we convert our economy to a green economy,” added Hendricks.
Local group, “Sage Sisters of Solidarity” is collecting donations to send to those on the front line of protests. They hope to have more events over the next couple of months.