72-Year Old Local Activist Fights Dredging With Hunger Strike
Fight For The Environment
The 72-year-old activist from Seadrift, Diane Wilson, is no stranger to fighting for what she believes in. Wilson has been fighting the petrochemical industry since 1989 and hasn't stopped momentum since then.
Wilson has been known to go to some pretty extreme lengths to get her point across and fight back against some pretty big companies. In the early 2000s, Wilson fought Dow Chemical and their environmental issues. Her journey was documented in an award-winning film that followed her as she went through hunger strikes, protests, and even chaining herself to the chemical plants' water tower.
Diana Wilson has also been very vocal and influential in cleaning Calhoun bays and even help win the multi-million dollar suit against Formosa plastics for illegal dumping.
Fast-forward to the present day, and Wilson is still out here with a voice and will as strong as ever. Currently, Wilson is partaking in a hunger strike to help stop a current multi-million dollar oil export investment in the Matagorda Ship Channel.
Currently, Wilson can be found near the Point Comfort causeway with Rosie, her truck, with a huge banner reading "STOP THE DREDGING. STOP OIL EXPORT." She also has a sign labeling the number of days she has been on her hunger strike.
Matagorda Ship Channel Toxic Dredging
According to Truthout, the Houston-based oil and gas firm Max Midstream plans to invest $360 million to deepen and widen the Matagorda Ship Channel by 2023. The firm intends to expand the sight to include new terminals that would allow larger shipping vessels that could quadruple the capacity of gas movement overseas. However, the firm needs to deepen and widen the, currently, narrow channel to do so.
The Matagorda Ship Channel must be dredged 47 feet deep and widened to 300 feet, which causes quite a concern to local activist Wilson. Wilson shared with Truthout that "Dredging would unearth mercury contamination from the bay system's Alcoa Superfund site, devastating fisheries that the local community is working to restore and revitalize."
Many locals have divided opinions about the subject. Social media is blowing up with people from both sides defending and mocking Wilson for her actions. In a town where Chemical Plants either harm families or pay the bills, it creates a highly touchy subject that people have very strong feelings about.