Monday, November 17, 2008

Say no to Coal. Even clean coal!

From the Sierra Club:

Are you in on the truth?

Tens of thousands of people have learned the truth about coal through our new website and online video at Despite the coal industry’s $40 million slick advertising campaign to mask the harmful and polluting nature of coal fired power plants, we are just not falling for it.

Now it’s time to take the truth about coal to the masses. We are launching a public awareness campaign to rebut the coal industry’s misleading claims. And we need your help.

Click here to come up with a new slogan for coal. One that tells the truth.

The best entries will be used on our ‘truth truck’ that will a carry a mobile billboard around D.C. and straight to the coal industry’s headquarters. (Don't worry, we've made sure our campaign is carbon neutral, which is more than we can say about the coal industry!)

Hundreds of comments have flooded in to the website from people telling their own story about coal. Here are a few of the most powerful:

Cathy in Ohio: I worked for a respiratory doctor and we would get coal miners in our office for treatment with black lung disease, emphysema. Poor souls had worked all their lives and basically gave their lives to that miserable coal mine. Their families felt helpless because it was the only job they knew and they worked and suffered. My utility bill was horribly expensive and they burned coal for our power and we paid dearly. There's got to be a better way for all involved.

Bill in Wyoming: I live in Wyoming, and we are coal country, and I live and breathe coal, but I do agree we have many, many options, so who will take that leap into the future? So instead of mining coal, we can get good jobs building wind turbines, solar panels, and set up incentives for research and development in alternative renewable energy sources. We can do it!

John in West Virginia: I grew up with coal in WV. For people who like to continue breathing, coal is not an answer. The strip miners are also polluting the beautiful state of my birth, making it impossible for people to live anywhere near their mining operations. Coal is part of the problem, and no part of the solution.

Real people, telling real stories about how coal affects their lives and communities. Let’s make sure that these are the types of messages that get out to the public, not the misleading sound bites the coal industry uses to mask the truth.

Submit your slogan today and let the country know what you really think of coal.

Thanks for all you do to protect the planet.

Bruce Nilles
National Director, Sierra Club Coal Campaign

I have long been on the anti-coal bandwagon, first for the health and saftey hazards of coal mining for miners, and now for the health and viability of our planet, and our economy. If you've ever been in coal country (WV, PA, etc) you've probably seen the damage done by coal mining. Slag heaps, and acres of countryside left unliveable because underground seaming (removing layers of coal from between layers of rock) has left the surface unstable and prone to caving in.

I still see no good reason why we should continue to kill workers in polluting coal mines to fuel polluting coal power plants, when we have so many better options available to us.

For more information about the evils of coal mining, visit the Stop Mountaintop Removal campaign.

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