( - promoted by Phillip Martin)
Hundreds of Texans from all walks of life rallied to Roll Beyond Coal on Halloween, Saturday, October 31.
There were 200 people in Dallas including speakers -- Representatives Carol Kent, Lon Burnam, Robert Mikloss, and Dallas Council Member Linda Koop.
There were 200 also in Austin including MC Ian Davis and speakers Representative Eddie Rodriguez, Austin Council Member and bike advocate Chris Riley (He stood up for the City's Climate Protection Agreement) and Dr. Kimberly Carter of Austin Physicians for Social Responsibility (She really nailed the seriously SCARY part of the Halloween message about Texas coal pollution).
100 oeople came out in the sparking city by the sea, Corpus Christi where their Clean Economy Coalition is in a contested case hearing this week along with Sierra Club over the proposed and quaintly named Las Brisas, 'the Breezes' coke plant. Corpus speakers included two physicians -- a family practioner from Aransas Pass, Dr. Lorraine Stehn, pediatrician Dr. Kevin Hopkings, Stacy Barrera, President of the TAMU-CC Young Democrats, former REpresentative Arnold Gonzales and Hal Suter of the Sierra Club.
There was also 50 people rolling beyond coal in Beaumont and 35 in Alpine, Texas.
Calmly scared half to death about rising coal costs, health and environmental impacts of 12 new Texas coal plants http://www.texas.sierraclub.or... , they are taking action to stop the second wave of the Texas coal rush and promoting instead clean air, clean power, green jobs, and the availability of water in the future.
Coal Plant Pollution means Attainment of Federal Air Quality Standards Shot to Hell
"These 12 new coal plants are a significant jump to the 17 operating coal plants we already have in Texas," said Rita Beving with Dallas Sierra Club. "Whether it's the nearby plants being built east of Waco or the one proposed as far away as Abilene, the wind carries coal plant pollution north to the Dallas-Fort Worth area and will only exacerbate our ability to reach attainment."
The Dallas-Fort Worth area is currently in non-attainment of required federal clean air standards, as is Houston and the Beaumont-Port Arthur area. Austin, San Antonio and the north east Texas area have early action compacts and are near non-attainment. New federal air quality standards coming this Fall (70 ppb)will mean that several additional regions of Texas will go into non-attainment.
Many states around the nation have dropped plans for coal plants, letting Texas run far ahead in a horrible lonely lead in the opposition direction. With Michigan trailing at only 4 proposed new coal plants, Texas has the largest number still moving in various stages of permitting - contested case hearings, appeal, and construction. With the grotesque rate of acceptance of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ), a whole army of new coal plants could go online next year emitting their enormous tonnage of pollution as they rev up to a full-throttled, smog-spewing, global warming, lung-clogging, nerve-shattering, mind-numbing, and heart-stopping blast of nitrogen oxides, sulfur dioxide, particulate matter, mercury, and carbon dioxide. See the fact sheet list of the proposed coal plants in Texas and the gory truth on their cumulative emissions numbers.
Human Health Impacts http://www.texas.sierraclub.org/press/newsreleases/HealthImpactsfromTexasCoalPlantPollution.pdf
Corpus Christi cardiologist, Dr. Greg Silverstein said, "In Corpus Christi, we already experience twice as much asthma as the state average. If the Las Brisas petcoke plant is allowed to go forward with the huge annual emissions of smog and smoke in their permit application, we
will see a significant increase of even more asthma in Corpus Christi and the surrounding towns. I am concerned about my patients and all the people of Corpus Christi."
Coke is regulated similarly to coal and it emits the same nasty pollutants. See just what effects coal and coke plants have on human physiology in the attached Fact Sheet.
Coastal Bend doctors of the Nueces County Medical Society and the Tri-County San Patricio-Aransas-Refugio Medical Society passed resolutions opposing the permitting of the hilariously-named Las Brisas (the Breezes) coke plant. Corpus Christi citizens from all walks of life united across class, Hispanic and Anglos, men, women, children, and the elderly crowded into a room that couldn't contain their opposition at last February's preliminary hearing in which a large number of individuals and organizations including the Clean Economy Coalition and the Sierra Club received 'standing' for a contested case hearing which began today, Monday, November 2.
Clean Energy Solutions and Green Jobs on the brighter side of the Dark Ages
"There are many reasons to oppose coal plants - they cost too much, make people sick, contribute to global warming, and use enormous amounts of water," said Eva Hernandez, Regional Organizer for Sierra Club's Beyond Coal campaign. "Another reason is that they are a huge dangerous diversion from the clean power and green jobs economy that Texas is so perfectly suited for and already leading."
Roll Beyond Coal is a project of Sierra Club's Climate Recovery Partnership and the Lone Star Chapter of the Sierra Club. In Texas, Sierra Club is fighting to stop new coal plants and clean up and phase out old coal plants. Sierra Club's environmental partners include our 14 Regional Sierra Club groups, lawyers on the Texas contested case hearings the Environmental Integrity Project, running buddies Sierra Student Coalition, Public Citizen, and a cast of dozens of awesome Texas organizations.
Slide show with photos from all rallies coming soon! Stay tuned to Lone Star Chapter of Sierra Club on Burnt Orange Report!