Free Forum Q&A – TIM DECHRISTOPHER: Civil disobedience (bidding) at public lands auction landed him 21 months in prisonWritten on May 25th, 2014
On December 19, 2008 TIM DeCHRISTOPHER disrupted a highly disputed BLM auction, effectively safeguarding thousands of acres of land. Not content to merely protest outside, Tim entered the auction hall and registered as bidder #70. He outbid industry giants on land parcels (which, starting at $2 an acre, were adjacent to national treasures like Canyonlands National Park), winning 22,000 acres of land worth $1.7 million Two months later, incoming Interior Secretary Ken Salazar invalidated the auction. Yet DeChristopher was indicted and tried on two federal felonies and spent 21 months in prison.
Released in April 2013, DeChristopher is the subject of documentary film, Bidder 70, which opened this weekend at the Music Hall in Beverly Hills and other theaters around the country. He joins me this week to tell his story. What led him to that auction? What went through his mind as he began bidding and winning? Why didn’t he take a plea deal? What was his experience in prison? What message does he have for others?
We’ll also talk about the state of the movements to deal with energy, environment, and climate change, in light of Obama’s recent speech and the eventual decision whether or not to build the KeystoneXL pipeline.
“At this point of unimaginable threats on the horizon, this is what hope looks like. In these times of a morally bankrupt government that has sold out its principles, this is what patriotism looks like. With countless lives on the line, this is what love looks like, and it will only grow…
— From Tim DeChristopher’s statement to the court at his sentencing hearing
JOHN WARNER and Paul Anastas are the founders of green chemistry and co-authors of Green Chemistry: Theory and Practice, in which, they establish 12 guiding principles for chemists. In 1996 Warner left a lucrative job at Polaroid to found the nation's first doctoral program in green chemistry, and in 2007 he founded Warner Babcock Institute for Green Chemistry, an innovation incubator, in Wilmington, Mass.
Green Chemistry is a revolutionary approach to the way that products are made; it is a science that aims to reduce or eliminate the use and/or generation of hazardous substances in the design phase of materials development. It requires an inventive and interdisciplinary view of material and product design. Green Chemistry follows the principle that it is better to consider waste prevention options during the design and development phase than to dispose or treat waste after a process or material has been developed.