Six Arrested in Fairfield Demonstration
Six people were arrested Thursday by Somerset County Sheriff Dept. deputies for refusing to leave a scaffold erected across the railroad tracks near Route 201 and 139 in Fairfield. The protesters erected the scaffolding in an attempt to blockade a Pan AM train bringing crude oil from North Dakota through Maine to Irving refineries in New Brunswick. The protesters also staged a mock oil spill at the site. Dressed in hazmat suits, protesters placed orange traffic cones in the center of the busy intersection of Routes 201 and 139 and spread out a black cloth to represent an oil spill.Protesters of the group 350 Maine came from as far away as Portland to address climate change and participate in a nationally coordinated week of action. The Pan Am trains carry crude oil from the Bakken oil fields of North Dakota, where it is extracted by a controversial process called “fracking” used to release the oil from shale rock, that can cause pollution in the air and water of surrounding communities. Similar demonstrations are taking place across the nation this week as part of “Fearless Summer”, a grassroots movement of dozens of environmental groups, as a way to expose the dangers of extreme forms of energy extraction.