Mountain Valley Pipeline opposition harvests 'Seeds of Resistance'

Shayne Dwyer/WDBJ7
Shayne Dwyer/WDBJ7(WDBJ)
Published: Oct. 16, 2016 at 11:44 PM EDT
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The fight continues in Southwest Virginia against the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline. It is set to run from West Virginia to the Danville area, cutting through many of our hometowns.

Sunday was a harvest celebration up on Bent Mountain. People who live on the mountain say it's always 10 degrees cooler and the water runs just a little bit clearer.

The Mountain Valley Pipeline says none of that is going to change, but some who live on the mountain are worried what a pipeline could do to that way of life.

"I want to see that folks along the line from Franklin to Roanoke to Montgomery County, Craig, Giles and upwards into Monroe, Summers County West Virginia are aligned together as one community in challenging this pipeline and they're all here today and that's what they're here to do," POWER Coalition Organizer Roberta Bondurant said. "I don't see a closing of a chapter as much of a continuation of the story and of the spirit that runs with the corn."

This Ponca corn has been designated sacred by the United States government, and here in Southwest Virginia, its story started earlier this spring. Anti-pipeliners planted these seeds in Franklin County and on other private land across Southwest Virginia as an act of unity and strength.

"We have a great community that is fighting this and that corn helps bring that together as well," Bent Mountain property owner Bruce Coffey said reflecting on the seeds he planted. "I also believe that good things will come from the situation that we are the guardians of our earth and we need to take care of it having this corn helps do that as well."

The "Keystone Pipeline Killers" came to town for harvest, and they were here when the seeds of resistance went into the ground.

"It's the resistance to corporate greed, it's the resistance to big-oil and it's that spirit that just comes out of us when somebody is just pushing your back against the wall and you have to stand up for your rights and stand up for what you believe in," Ponca Nation Of Oklahoma tribe member Mekasi Camp Horinek said.

The new harvest will also be used to re-plant Ponca corn next season.