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#NoMVP: Nana Takes Up Residence In Tree Sit Blocking Mountain Valley Pipeline

ELLISTON, VIRGINIA — On Saturday, May 18th 2019, 44-year-old Crystal Jean Mello has taken up residence as the newest face of resistance in opposition to the Mountain Valley Pipeline.

Originally published by Earth First.

A working class mother of two and grandmother of one, Mello was slated to be a speaker at the “Stand with Appalachia: No Mountain Valley Pipeline!” in Leesburg, Virginia today — at which time 12-year-old Braylon Mello instead took the stage to say, “My mom couldn’t be here because she is in a tree.”

Crystal Mello states: “I have lived in southwest Virginia much of my life. Every day we would wake up to these mountains. Every sunrise and every sunset is a masterpiece. Mountain Valley Pipeline is destroying that masterpiece.” Mello said that she was inspired to take action after bearing witness to the repeated examples of destruction at the hands of the pipeline company and subsequent inadequate response and innaction from the West Virginia DEP, Virginia DEQ, and attorney general Mark Herring. “I’ve seen MVP continue to work despite hitting deep water while attempting to drill under Route 460, I’ve seen the Laferriere’s organic farm scarred, I’ve seen pipe sitting in water and mud for months at Four Corners Farm where cows used to graze, and you can only imagine what we haven’t been able to see. It doesn’t take a scientist to know this will end in disaster.”

Crystal speaks of ongoing intimidation tactics waged by Mountain Valley Pipeline in attempt to attempt to silence those fighting for their land and livelihood, referencing two recent felony charges in which pipeline resisters engaging in civil disobedience were charged with “threats of terrorist acts”. She says, “These are scare tactics and we aren’t falling for it. They want to call these young people terrorists? Well, I’m Nana, and a cleaning lady, and I stand with them. They want us to be hopeless and feel like big business will always win. But we can all do little things and create big change together. Change that can beat this pipeline. We are still here!”

Tree Sits in Elliston, Virginia have been blocking construction for 256 days.


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