Greenpeace activists in North Carolina have climbed a Progress Energy power station in Asheville and “have secured themselves to the coal loader and conveyers, which will prevent coal from entering the facility,” Greenpeace reports.
The message of the activists, being sent to Progress Energy and Duke Energy (which may merge with Progress Energy soon, creating the largest utility in the U.S.), is that “communities and the climate can’t wait for a renewable energy revolution.”
From destructive mining practices, to the pollution that comes from burning coal for electricity, to the storage of toxic coal ash, coal is trouble. And these costs are not covered by the coal industry or included in the price of coal. Instead, due to artificially low costs of creating electricity from coal, more coal is mined and burnt, resulting in individuals paying the price for this at the hospital and through premature death.
Opposing the Progress Energy Coal Plant in Asheville
“This plant runs on destroyed mountains, it spews out air pollution, it causes climate change and it poisons the water and the earth. If Duke merges with Progress, the new owners have a responsibility to the people of North Carolina to move to clean energy,” said Greenpeace climate campaigner and activist Robert Gardner.
The Asheville coal power plant lives off coal from mountaintop removal coal mining. Yep, Appalachian mountains are decapitated to provide the power plant with coal.
“The plant produces 1,994 pounds of sulfur dioxide, 788 pounds of nitrogen oxides, and 2,629,243 tons of carbon dioxide,” Greenpeace reports. “Its coal ash ponds are designated ‘high hazard’ by the EPA, meaning they are likely to kill people if they spill. Like other coal plants across the country, the plant causes death and illness in the community.”