Thursday, December 15, 2005
On December 5th, mainstream environmental organizations like Public Citizens and SEED, sold out the people of San Antonio, in a secret deal with CPS to support the proposed new Coal fired power plant. This plant, situated near the already existing toxic coal fired plant, will poison the low-income people of color community on the East side.
Southwest Workers Union has long opposed a new coal-fired plant anywhere in Texas. Coal is the dirtiest form of energy and source of catastrophic climate change. This new plant will release hundreds more tons of deadly mercury on an already smog-filled city. Clean Coal is an oxymoron. We are saddened by these so-called public interest organizations for supporting environmental racism and increasing toxic contamination in our communities.
Friday, December 09, 2005
MONTREAL—A peaceful action quickly erupted into conflict today at the U.N.Conference on Climate Change when Nia Robinson of the U.S.-based Environmental Justice and Climate Change Initiative (EJCC), was escorted from an official event of the U.S. delegation because a can of Spam “could be used as a weapon”.
Robinson and her fellow members of the EJCC Youth Committee were on-hand to deliver Climate Change Survival Packs to U.S. delegates at the delegation’s presentation on public-private partnerships. The Climate Change Survival Packs contain symbolic items that represent a variety of ways for Indigenous Peoples, people of color, and low-income to protect themselves from the continuing burdens of climate change, including: a face mask (air pollution), lantern (increasing electricity prices for low-income people), bug spray (increased presence of disease-carrying insects), sunscreen (heat waves), cans of Spam (threats to the subsistence of Indigenous Peoples), and a life preserver (floods). After being surrounded and questioned as to her intentions by five UN police officers, Robinson was barred from re-entering the Bay du Nord briefing room where the U.S. delegation was convening.
“My requested removal is another sign that our government wants to continue its policies of operating bilaterally and behind closed doors,” said Robinson, a native of Detroit, Mich. “The ‘public’ in their ‘public-private partnerships’ fails to include the people most affected by climate change.”
One officer threatened to confiscate the camera of a reporter who was documenting the event. A high-level U . S . official referred to the event as “childish and pathetic.”
The Environmental Justice and Climate Change Initiative is an effort by 28 US environmental justice, climate justice, religious, policy, and advocacy groups to call for action from the Bush Administration and US Congress on climate change. The EJCC Initiative supports energy efficiency, renewable energy, and conservation policies while seeking equitable measures to protect and assist the communities most affected by climate change.
see more information about the COP/MOP at climate youth blog
3 members of SWU attended this event in Montreal as part of the Environmental Justice and Climate Change initiative delegation. SWU presented at panels and press conferences about the refinery and petrochemical industry in the Gulf Coast, the impacts of Katrina and the face of climate justice in Texas.