Does it tee you off that corporations are polluting your environment, damaging your health, and getting rich in the process? Here’s a chance to have your voice be heard and make a difference. Even though you may think, “This is not in my backyard!” It is. Since we share this planet and breath the same air, you are affected, no matter where you live.
The Powder River (and Morrow County) coal mining proposal would affect the health of everyone. Not only would our health be affected by the hundreds of pounds of coal dust escaping (causing asthma, emphysema and cancer) from each and every train car or barge as it travels along the route of the proposed coal transport from Montana to the Pacific and then to China, but the health of everyone who breathes air would be affected as the pollution from burning that coal circulates around the globe with the air currents. Also, the burning of those proposed 150 million tons of coal would quicken global climate change and add even more to the extreme weather patterns we’ve all been experiencing.
Who is the corporation that would profit? It is an Australian company called Ambre. According to Bethany Cotton of Greenpeace, Ambre Energy was banned from mining coal in Australia. They are now proposing to mine publicly-owned coal from BLM lands (which ostensibly belong to everyone in the US), ship it to China, and pocket the profits themselves, while damaging the environment and the health of potentially millions, if not billions, of people.
When I asked Ambre’s PR person Liz Fuller of Gard Communications how they would take responsibility for any of the environmental or human health damages they inflict in the process of mining and transporting coal halfway around the world, she deflected the question by saying, “They’ll follow all laws.”
Add your comments before 5 pm Oct 31 and check the box “Recommend Permit Denial.” Here’s a sample comment (written by the Sierra Club), which you can copy and paste: “Whether in the wake of mining in Montana’s Powder River basin, in communities bisected by coal trains, in port towns facing massive coal export terminals, or abroad in villages displaced by new coal-fired power plants, coal anywhere is unhealthy everywhere.”