Final Press Conference for Science Hill Tree Sit

The tree-sit drew to a close that morning when UC police seized control of Science Hill and arrested the last remaining tree-sitter.

On December 13th, tree-sit spokespersyn Jennifer Charles, tree-sit supporter Dani Drake, and tree-sitter Sorrel, held a press conference at the base of UC Santa Cruz to read an official tree-sit statement. They also spoke personally about the tree-sit, ongoing struggle against UCSC’s expansion into Upper Campus and answered questions from the media, supporters and others in attendance.

The tree-sit drew to a close that morning when UC police seized control of Science Hill and arrested the last remaining tree-sitter. William’s Tree Service, protected by fences and UC police, proceeded to cut down Redwoods and Oak Trees to make way for construction of a Biomedical building.

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Tree Sit Ends, Redwoods and Oaks Cut on UCSC’s Science Hill

A tree cutting company hired by the university cut down a grove of 100-year-old redwood trees to make way for construction of a Biomedical building.

Santa Cruz, CA — Over four hundred days ago, a handful of activists climbed up into the trees on Science Hill as a symbol of resistance to the University of California’s plan to destroy 120 acres of campus forest. For the past 13 months, the tree sit has drawn attention to UCSC’s plan to develop upper campus in a way that activists say is, “without regard for the welfare of one of Santa Cruz’s last wild ecosystems.”

On December 13th at approximately 8:00am, the tree sit drew to a close as police seized control of Science Hill, arresting one tree sitter. Later, a tree cutting company hired by the university cut down a grove of 100-year-old redwood trees to make way for construction of a Biomedical building. At 2:00pm, tree sitters and tree sit supporters held a press conference at the base of campus.

The three clusters of redwoods which have now been clearcut were inhabited since November 7, 2007, when over 500 students, alumni, and community members rallied in opposition to the University’s Long Range Development Plan.

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One Year Anniversary Celebration at the UCSC Tree-Sit

On November 7, 2007, people took to the redwoods at the site of the proposed Biomedical Sciences building to show their opposition to destroying 120 acres of upper campus and having an additional 4,500 students taking from Santa Cruz’s limited resources.

On November 7, 2008, about 75 people turned out on Science Hill, the site scheduled for construction of a Biomedical Sciences Facility, to celebrate the one year anniversary of the UCSC Science Hill Tree Sit. The festivities featured speakers, spoken word, and musical performances, as well as laughter, storytelling and conversation. People also marked the occasion by sharing memories of November 7th, 2007, the day that hundreds of courageous students, staff, faculty, and community members withstood the violence of the police in order to support the tree sit.

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A Glimpse at UCSC’s North Campus

Many students graduate from UC Santa Cruz without ever stepping foot in the undeveloped North Campus, also known as Upper Campus. North Campus is a hundred-year old redwood and chaparral forest that provides spectacular habitat for a wide range of flora and fauna, many of which are listed as endangered or declining species. Even though many students are not familiar with this portion of the university, there are other students, as well as Santa Cruz locals and outdoor enthusiasts from around the world that make use of the trails in North Campus for research and recreation.

The beautiful forest in North Campus, and the creatures who live there, are under threat by UCSC’s controversial 2005 Long Range Development Plan. Recreational use of North Campus and land management decisions have been a long standing concern for the survival of rare species on the UCSC campus, but the 2005 LRDP may have a more damaging and lasting impact than anything in history, as UCSC plans are in motion to develop 120 acres.

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Celebrating 200 Days of Tree-Sitting Resistance to UCSC Expansion

On June 2nd, UC Santa Cruz students were joined by the legendary Raging Grannies of Santa Cruz and other community supporters in the celebration of 200 days of tree-sitting resistance to UCSC’s 2005 Long Range Development Plan (LRDP). The gathering was called to fortify spirits, resupply the tree-sit, and plan for summer. Activities included a native plant workshop, songs by the Raging Grannies, discussions and a piñata.

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