President Cyril Scott (second from right) at the People’s Climate March in New York City.
EUGENE, Ore. –(February 26, 2015)–Changing Currents: the 33rd Annual Public Interest Environmental Law Conference will host Cyril Scott, President of the Rosebud Lakota Sioux, as a keynote speaker and panelist.
President Scott was born and raised on the Rosebud Indian Reservation. Upon graduating from high school, he travelled around the country, working in the private sector. In 2005, he was elected to the Rosebud Sioux Tribal Council as a representative for the Antelope District. In 2014, President Scott was elected as president of the Tribal Council. In his acceptance speech, President Scott said to the Rosebud Public: “I promised the people of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe ‘sustainable economic development’ and it’s a promise that I aim to keep! Without a local, tribally-driven, self-sustaining economy our people, our elders and youth will always be subjected to the federal government in a bad way.”
In pursuit of this promise, President Scott and his community are actively engaged in opposing the Keystone XL Pipeline. In a November article President Scott proclaimed, “The House has now signed our death warrants and the death warrants of our children and grandchildren. The Rosebud Sioux Tribe will not allow this pipeline through our lands.”
President Scott will appear on the panel, “Indigenous Resistance of the Keystone XL,” which will share the Rosebud Tribe’s efforts to fight the pipeline development. Paula Antoine will join President Scott from the Rosebud Tribe on the panel. She is the coordinator of the Sicangu Oyate Land Office and a founding member of Oyate Wahacanka Woecun, Shielding the People, a project of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe which established the Sicangu Iyuksa Wicoti (Rosebud Spiritual Camp) on March 29, 2015 in opposition of the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline. Tara Houska is a citizen of Couchiching First Nation and a tribal rights attorney in the Washington D.C. office of Hobbs, Straus, Dean & Walker LLP.
Although President Obama has vetoed Congress’ Keystone XL bill, the permit for the pipeline looms in the State Department and the permit for the construction of the portion of the pipeline through South Dakota is up for renewal this year. The Rosebud Sioux Tribe will participate in an evidentiary hearing before the Public Utilities Commission of South Dakota, scheduled May 5-8, 2015. Comments on the Keystone XL pipeline can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org or PUC, 500 E. Capitol Ave., Pierre, SD 57501.