Following Joe Biden’s executive decision to kill the Keystone XL Pipeline, Hollywood celebrities including Leonardo DiCaprio, Jane Fonda, Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo, and Cher are now pressuring the president to shut down another energy project — the Dakota Access Pipeline.
Former president Donald Trump championed both projects as job creators and important components to achieving energy independence.
A letter to the White House signed by a slew of celebrities and environmental activists said that the closure of the Dakota Access Pipeline is necessary in order “to address the climate crisis and strengthen relationships with Indigenous communities.”
Other stars who signed the letter include Amy Schumer, Joaquin Phoenix, Alyssa Milano, Chelsea Handler, Don Cheadle, Jason Momoa, Robert Downey, Jr., Ed Helms, Kerry Washington, Cyndi Lauper, and Sarah Silverman.
President Trump signed an executive order in 2017 for construction to proceed on the Keystone XL and Dakota Access projects, reversing former president Obama’s decision to halt the former project on environmental grounds. The Dakota Access project had been stalled due to protests by the Standing Rock Sioux.
Last year, a federal judge dealt a setback to the Dakota Access project, ordering the Army Corps of Engineers to conduct an environmental impact review.
The letter to Biden is now demanding the pipeline be shut down entirely while the Army conducts the environmental study. The letter describes the pipeline as a “historic injustice,” referring to opposition by various Native American tribes.
“The U.S. Army Corps must ensure a robust environmental review with significant tribal consultation, tribal consent, and a thorough risk analysis,” the letter says. “With your leadership, we have a momentous opportunity to protect our water and respect our environmental laws and the rights of Indigenous people. This is our moment.”
In his first day in office, Biden ordered the shut down of the Keystone XL pipeline, killing thousands of energy jobs in the process. Environmentalists hailed the decision, while blue-collar workers in the energy field denounced Biden’s destruction of jobs.
Other stars who signed the letter include Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Dave Mathews, Jennifer Connelly, Paul Bettany, Josh Gad, Marisa Tomei, Orlando Bloom, Piper Perabo, and Shailene Woodley.