Tuesday, May 8th 2012, 7:57 AM EDT
Thirteen Canadians were peacefully arrested this weekend for blockading Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) railway tracks in order to prevent the passage of coal from the United States and destined to be burned in Asia. Among those arrested was Mark Jaccard, an economics professor with Simon Fraser University, who won the Nobel Prize for his work with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).
The act of civil disobedience was a protest against the on-going burning of coal for energy, since coal is the world's most carbon-intensive fuel and thereby a major driver of climate change.
"The window of opportunity for avoiding a high risk of runaway, irreversible climate change is closing quickly. Within this decade we will either have steered away from disaster, or have locked ourselves onto a dangerous course," Jaccard wrote in a statement prior to his arrest. "Our governments continue to ignore the warnings of scientists and push forward with policies that will accelerate the burning of fossil fuels. Private interests—coal, rail, oil, pipeline companies and the rest—continue to push their profit driven agenda, heedless of the impact on the rest of us. This has to stop."
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