At the end of Garvey’s book on Climate Ethics that he concludes that direct action is necessary, and by his ethical standards, non-violent civil disobedience is appropriate. So I was inspired to read the story of Tim DeChristopher, who disrupted the auction of the oil rights for land in Utah around the spectacular Arches National Park. He pretended to be a bona fide bidder, and successfully bid for a $1.8 million of oil and gas leases, and pushed up the prices on others. Of course had no intention of buying them – the idea was to draw attention to the sale of these lands, and, as it turns out, to show that this auction, along with a whole bunch of other similar auctions, was illegal anyway. Despite the finding that the auctions were illegal, Tim is now up for trial, facing a penalty of ten years in jail.
His trial starts today, and there’s a huge campaign underway to protest at the trial, and to support Tim in his fight for justice. Having visited both Arches National Park and Salt Lake City back in December, I kinda wish I was there this week to show him some support.