September 26, 2017

Youth Climate Intervenors: Sarah Harper

Sarah Harper is one of the Youth Climate Intervenors—13 young people who have been granted full status as a formal intervening party in Minnesota’s contested case permit process for Enbridge's Line 3 tar sands pipeline. Read more about the Youth Climate Intervenors here.

Sarah Harper is one of the 13 Youth Climate Intervenors fighting the Line 3 Pipeline

Name: Sarah Harper  

Hometown (and how long you have lived there): I just moved to Minneapolis, but I grew up in Minnetonka, MN.

Age/Year in school: 20 years old, Senior at the University of Minnesota

How did you get involved with Line 3?

I became a volunteer with the MN350 (the climate justice group) about a year ago, and I started hearing about Line 3 at the first meeting I attended. I have been working on this campaign ever since!

Why do you care about stopping Line 3?

I care about stopping Line 3 because all pipelines leak, and this one will cross the lakes and rivers I grew to love here in Minnesota. In the past year, I have witnessed the destruction this infrastructure has caused to its surrounding environment and communities, and I cannot sit by while corporations profit off of the needless harm. The long-term consequences of this project include locking our state into oil dependence for the 50+ year lifespan of Line 3, and based on the confirmed science of climate change, that means game over for my future and for generations to come.

What does being a Youth Intervenor mean to you?

To be a Youth Intervenor is one of the greatest opportunities I have ever been given. Our generation is often completely ignored by those in power, especially when it comes to things that will undeniably harm our future like fossil fuel consumption. Now, after an unprecedented move, I am given the power to speak for those who have been, still are and will be silenced by this destructive industry. Above all, I am most honored to represent them.

How does this impact (this city/community)? Why should Line 3 matter to Minneapolis?

Line 3 should matter to Minneapolis because it will cross the Mississippi river and threaten our very drinking water. It will also cross some of the most pristine lakes in Northern Minnesota—a collectively shared treasure among our state’s residents. Enbridge has a poor reputation when it comes to cleaning up large oil spills; the million-gallon spill of 2010 in the Kalamazoo river has still not been fully cleaned up. According to Line 3’s Draft Environmental Impact Statement, the cost of climate change as a result of this pipeline alone could be as high as $287 billion. How much will Minnesota have to pay for, and what mess will we be left to clean up?

What is a fun fact no one would know about you?

I am a fervent downhill skier!


Meet the Youth Climate Intervenors

Check back soon for profiles of the rest of the Youth Climate Intervenors!