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Over the last few weeks, I had the pleasure of collaborating with Spring Break organizers to do snap interviews of participants getting ready for Mountain Justice Spring Break (both VA & WV) and Shalefield Justice Spring Break. We asked each participant to tell us more about what moves you to stand in solidarity with these frontlines. Check out some of their inspiring reflections below!

Shalefield Justice Spring Break (starting in a few days!)

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Last weekend, over 1,000 youth leaders converged in DC for XL Dissent - the largest-ever youth sit-in for climate justice. 398 young people were arrested for taking a peaceful & principled stand at the White House, protesting the Keystone XL pipeline. This action just didn't just make waves in DC - it also blew up in big ways on social media.

The Energy Action Coalition team was on-site and jumped in with friends at 350.org and SustainUS to take photos and sling memes - trying to spotlight the diversity of youth leaders who came from around the country (and as it turns out — the world.). Check out some of the deeply inspiring youth activists we met, who shared their stories with us at the pre-action training, as well as some of the inspiring speakers at the rally itself.

Most all of the memes are available on the XL Dissent Facebook Page - where stories of the youth resistance against KXL continues!

375 This meme captures one (of two) huge non-violent direct action trainings that happened the night before the action. This image mash-up totally popped on facebook and revved people up - with over 5,000 shares, and over a third of a million views. Photo and meme by Mary Schellentrager.

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372 On March 7, 1965 in Selma, Alabama police attacked six hundred peaceful protesters as they marched from Selma to Montgomery in Alabama protesting the murder of Jimmie Jackson. The power of the protesters on this day and the image of their courage amidst the brutality of those police officers are etched in the memory of the fight for Civil Rights.  But more importantly it is a memory and act that provides the foundation for uprisings that we see taking place around the world right now, even if you don’t know it.

Today I marched with protesters against KXL to the State Department as I did on March 2 with XL Dissent to the White House, there were no dogs or hostile police, but the urgency of what we were marching for, the message that we were carrying to President Obama and Secretary Kerry to Reject KXL reminded me of those 600 peaceful courageous people standing up and marching forward to be seen and to be heard to change the world that they lived in to be better.

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The following post was authored by Cassandra Van Dam, a second-year student at the University of Michigan . The first time I ever took direct action against large corporations was also the first time I organized a disruption. Once I got started, things moved quickly; in less than 3 months, students at University of Michigan disrupted 8 separate bank recruitment session in objection to financing for the coal industry. Organizing the Bank of America and Citi bank disruptions was an incredibly empowering and thrilling experience.

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This post originally appeared on Rainforest Action Network's blog, The Understory.

This Sunday, over one thousand young people will descend on the White House. By the end of the day, hundreds of them, most of them students at more than 200 colleges and universities, will be arrested. There’s something happening here.362

Just days after a U.S. State Department review determined that ERM, an oil industry contractor and dues-paying member of the American Petroleum Institute, was capable of an unbiased review of the Keystone XL oil pipeline, hundreds of youth activists will be risking arrest outside the White House as part of XL Dissent. Their objective is to secure a rejection of the climate-killing Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and to hold President Obama accountable for his campaign promise to safeguard climate stability by “end(ing) the tyranny of oil.”

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Power Shift was a life changing experience for me I was exposed to an entirely new world, new people, and new problems. I was empowered to get more involved in environmental activism from all of the action that I saw and heard about happening across the nation. I got connected to groups on my campus and started working with the Kentucky Student Environmental Coalition, but this is not about me its about the people I connected with.

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This blog was authored by Caroline Burney, a fourth-year student at Washington University in St. Louis.

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Recently I participated on a panel with Clive Hamilton, author of “Earthmasters,” at American University hosted by Washington Geoengineering Consortium www.dcgeoconsortium.org, we discussed geoengineering and environmental justice. Before the panel discussion Mr. Hamilton lectured on his book and ended his comments with a question, “Why are the Environmental Justice NGOs not a part of the conversation on geoengineering?”

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Crossposted from Greenpeace's blog, The EnvironmentaLIST.

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