This year’s Fall Skillshare Camp has been filled with numerous workshops on the diverse subjects ranging from anarcho feminist theory and practice to multiple direct action skills and strategies. Like always it has offered all those resisting capitalist exploitation of the planet and numerous communities a chance to come together and connect, share and ispire each other.
Yesterday for example concluded with a spoken word session dealing with topics from alienation and resistance to musical concert with many of the works being about the Hambacher Forest struggle itself.
Additional 3 days of the Skillshare camp remain so pack a backpack and hit your closest highway on-ramp and put a thumb up in the direction of Hambi…now or during the whole cutting season as the occupation with its constant climbing workshops and sharing of knowlege could be considered one extended skillshare camp.
On September 19th at 8 o’clock in the morning approx 100 cops entered the millenarian Hambacher Forest, occupied for last six years blocking the expansion of RWE’s open cast lignite mine, to remove the “The Tripod”, a live-in barricade. The official state line was that it was to keep the roads open for emergency vehicles in case of accident occurring in the forest. The emergency vehicles are the harvesters, bulldozers and loaders of this years cutting season which will begin on Oct. 25 and the “accident” is the global climate chaos, millions of premature deaths a year, and irreplaceable habitat loss to which Hambacher (cynically named after the forest its destroying) Mine: single largest net CO2 emitter in Europe, is not an innocent bystander to but rather a culprit extending its effect through emission and pollutants and through RWE Global Power Conglomerate machine impacting and destroying communities and ecosystem from Colombia, England and Germany to Siberia.
When the police entered the forest they at first surrounded the Tripod to prevent supporters joining in the two blockaders, one of whom was locked on the ground to a concrete lock-on and the second who was in the top of the tripod which in its mid level included a platform with a tent. Through walkway from a neighbouring tree additional person was still able to join those on the inside. For the next 5 hours the cops massed up around the barricade as large bulldozers removed the barricades leading into the heart of the forest(each year a 500 meter swath which is cut to enlarge the mine) followed by back loaders loading the scrap metal and tarps which comprises left over material from the ocupation and performing a function of trash removal for the struggle. The barricade clearing was also immediately followed by peeps emerging from the forest and rebuilding the barricades behind the heavy equipment often with cops still in sight. During this time the forest resonated with animal calls and music from the approx. 40 forest defenders. As forest roads turned into parking lots for long lines of forces of repression paint and bottles of bitumen were thrown at the police vehicles. Pigs responded with snatch attacks at the people singing and playing drums in solidarity around the Tripod. All together 5 people were grabbed and later released.
By 1 oclock cops begun to cut the barbed wire connecting the wood stocked around the ground level of the Tripod and got to the forest activist locked on under the table of Tripod’s kitchen. For over 2 hours they went at it with their power tools. And as concrete cutting tools echoed in the forest, climbing cops started to get on to the tree with the walkway ropes attempting to cut the lines and cut off the activist who descended into the tripod and was doing support to the people inside. Lower branches were being cut off and ladders attached to the tree giving enough time to make it back across and into the crown of the tree where the two climbing cops followed. Holding out for over an hour in the thin top branches the two climbing cops a meter and a half below attempted to convince the climber that they were just concerned with the person safety and that the activist needed to be removed before proceeding to the tripod. Eventually they gave up and descended from the tree to the tripod where for over an hour they tugged, pulled and then stepped on the tripod defender and later had a hard time removing him as he lay limp in the fork of the tripod. Once on the ground popo attempted to use pain compliance bullshit to try to get him to walk but that did not work either and he was dragged and then carried to the cop car.
Overall this has been one of the longest road barricade evictions with over 9 hours of struggle and when the cops left the forest the barricade building and food sharing resumed in full.
This year especially is an important time for the Defense of the Hambacher Forest as the new wave of deforestation is about to ensue during this winters cutting season and as another Direct Action Skillshare Camp will take place in the forest from Semptember 25th to Oct1. October 1st would have been the official start of this years cutting season which has just been postponed to October 25 as RWE is forced to appear in Administrative Court in Cologne on October 17 by a law suit initiated by Bund fur Natur as a response to the company’s lack of enviromental assesment studies, its lack of studies of costs of post extraction clean up and last but definitevely not least: two colonies of endangered bats being discovered in this year’s cutting zone. In November COPP summit will also take place in Bonn which is in the middle of North Rhine Westfalia coal region. That in itself is not an accident as the coal industry is heavily coopting the negotiations and framing coal as a transition energy source. Next COPP is also scheduled to take place in Katowice, Poland the centre of the Silesian Coal Mining Region.
Climate Justice Struggle in Hambacher Forest and in countless other locations around the world is a response to the Neo-Liberal Extractionist Agenda of Disaster Capitalism and a call to preserve every community every organism being paramount to protecting Planet as a whole.
FOR THE EARTH!!!!
Join us for a meal and get involved in liberating small samplings of beeches, oaks, maples and aspens from the frontline where this winter again we can expect hundreds of riots cops and RWE harvesters and bulldozers attempting to make sure that biodiversity that survived for over last 12,000 years will be eliminated. Trees are a keystone species on which countless other organisms depend so this action gives a chance for some of this biodiversity to be preserved. Started this spring tens of trees from Hambi have been planted at public, collective and individual spaces all across Europe. These trees are a silent testimonial to the extinction of the Hambacher Forest habitats and with small info boards informing of where they have come from they patiently await for their seeds to grow through the cracks of concrete and asphalt that surround them at the moment.
During this Deep Ecology Get Together aditional bird habitats will also be made out of zero waste items such as mid size containers. There will also be discussion of species and biodiversity present in the Hambacher Forest followed by Hambacher Forest Tshirt printing. Join us and tell your friends.
The additional items that could be of use that you could contribute to this project would be small buckets, shovels, and large hiking boots and rubber boots as well as large cooking oil containers and small beer cegs for the bird habitats. Feel free to also bring extra shirts, jackets on which you will be able to print some cool Hambi art.
This is also an ongoing project so if you can not make it tomorrow but are still interested in participating in propagating some of endangered trees and even seeds please get in touch with fnord.andromeda at riseup.net.
We received the e-mail below.
Let’s remember: On 1 December 2015, RWE announced that it would reorganize the Group. It was foreseeable that electricity generation from coal would end. So it was bundled in its own business area: RWE Power AG.
When we compare the parent company, the RWE Group, to a farmer, RWE Power AG is a dairy cow which once gave a lot of milk and is now to be vigorously milked till it drops down dead. Then others may care of the disposal of the emaciated carcass: The workers who lose their jobs without sufficient replacement in time, the villages “on the rim”, with a poisonous dust hole in front of their noses (where its too steep embankments in an area endangered by earthquakes and increasing sudden rainfall form a problem for themselves), thousands of resettled in their soulless new villages, the taxpayers, the world climate and so on.
Please read in this post, how this milking to death works: more…
A suit filed in the Cologne Administrative court by BUND NRW, a local chapter of Friends of the Earth, has resulted in RWE postponing its planned begining of the cutting season from October 1st to October 25th. This court case addresses the lack of environmental assesments, disregard of Flora and Fauna directives and brings attention to two colonies of endangered Bechstein’s bat that are located in the area of the Hambach Forest that is to be cut this winter. These two habitats contain 30-35 females each and are brooding places for their young as well. The suit also addresses the endangered biodiversity of the oak and beach stands that are to be cut and which have stood there since the end of the last ice age 12,000 years ago and represent one of the last natural outposts of this type in the region.
A court hearing concerning the legal aspects of the future of the forest will take place in Cologne on October 17 Verwaltungs-Gericht (Administrative Court) in Cologne, Hall 160 at 10:30 clock. Make a note in your calendar if you are in the area.
Another area in which you could assist even remotely in blocking RWE with its plans to destroy the forest is by contacting as many naturalists, botanists, entomologists, ornithologists, etc at your local university, environmental or naturalist group and directing their attention to the struggle to save the Hambacher Forest. A parallel effort of this type has taken place in the ZAD the Notre Dame and in Bialowieza forest making them some of the most studied and documented natural areas in Europe. Hambach Forest is in the desperate need of similar grass-roots, non institutional studies to be used as an expanded activist tool set together with direct actions. Both approaches do not require professionalism or any academic training but interest and motivation only.
More info on the suit can be found on BUNDS website at
Today a bus with a trailer dropped one and a half ton of food in the meadow occupation. It has been container by a single man and brought by a friendly collective. Most of the food immediately was squirrelled away into different tree houses, trailers and homes. It as well as hundreds of kilos of dry food remaining will be a very needed morale booster in the time leading into the cutting season that will start at the beginning of next month (October).
Big Thanks for people collecting and delivering the food supplies as well as providing many other forms of support.
If you are interested in giving a workshop on many topics that involve radical and deep ecology, direct action, DIY, forest skills(herbs,eatible plants, etc) and report-backs from parallel struggles then lease get in touch with us and arrange a time when you would like to give your workshop or presentation. The Skillshare Festival will take place towards the end of Oct and beginning of September.
See you in the forest!