Monkey Wrenching Activities Carried Out by a Fictional Gang in Arizona

Pushing a bulldozer into a reservoir

Setting a bulldozer on fire

Destruction of an oil drill-rig tower

Removal of geophones used for seismic oil exploration

Draining the oil from diesel engines, then starting them up and letting them run without oil Cutting barbed wire fences on ranches

Blowing up a railroad bridge used for coal transport from a strip mine

Defacing a Smokey the Bear sign put up by the U.S. Forest Service

Cutting power lines to a coal strip mine

Pouring sand and Karo syrup into fuel tanks of bulldozers

Pulling up developers' survey stakes

Cutting up the wiring, fuel lines, control link rods, and hydraulic hoses of earth moving machines Knocking over commercial billboards along highways

Source: Adapted from Abbey, E. 1975. The Monkey Wrench Gang. Avon Books, New York.

Seen Smith, Bonnie Abbzug, and Dr. Alexander Sarvis). These actions ranged from "subtle, sophisticated harassment techniques" to "blatant and outrageous industrial sabotage," but there was never any intention to threaten human life (Abbey, 1975). This kind of ecoradical activity is actually being carried out, in one form or another, by certain extreme environmental organizations. For example, it appears that one extreme environmental group may have been responsible for destruction of structures at a lab conducting research on genetic engineering of trees (Service, 2001). The subject relates to the present book because well-trained ecological engineers probably would make excellent monkey wrenchers based on their balance of knowledge between ecology and traditional engineering and their facility with destructive technology.

As an aside, one objective of Abbey's Monkey Wrench Gang was to blow up Glen Canyon Dam on the Colorado River near the Arizona-Utah border in order to return the river to its natural condition. Although the Glen Canyon Dam still stands, the gang members would be pleased to learn that dam removal is becoming a socially accepted form of river restoration across the U.S. (Grossman, 2002; Hart and Poff, 2002).

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