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Earth Day in Vancouver: parade, politics and pipeline opposition

All photos by Daniel J. Pierce

To celebrate Earth Day 2012 this Sunday, Vancouverites flocked to Commercial Drive for a lively parade and rally co-hosted by local environmental groups Youth for Climate Justice Now and the Wilderness Committee.

Dressed in everything from elaborate fish costumes to garbage bags simulating dripping tar sands oil, the sign-waving crowds met just after 11 a.m. to begin a boisterous parade up the street. People of all ages joined in the celebration, ending up at East Vancouver's Grandview Park for a series of musical performances and speeches.

The event featured appearances from Mayor Gregor Robertson (accompanied by Parks Board commissioner Niki Sharma), as well as Wilderness Committee campaigner Ben West, Greenpeace co-founder Rex Weyler, and talented young singer-activist Ta'Kaiya Blaney. In honour of Earth Day, speakers addressed key issues like climate change and pollution, and expressed their passionate opposition to pipelines and coastal tanker traffic in BC—particularly with regards to Kinder Morgan's planned Vancouver port expansion and the controversial Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline.

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