Bad air in Indiana, good protest

Dateline: Wed 05 Dec 2007

From the Evansville Courier-Press Aug. 31, 2007:

"This place where we're sitting is the Saudi Arabia of coal," Gov. Mitch Daniels said during a keynote address at The Centre in Downtown Evansville. "It would be the height of folly to leave that coal in the ground unused."

The administration's backing of a new Duke Energy coal plant in the already-heavily polluted southwestern part of the state will be met with a protest Thursday.

Citizens Action Coalition is urging concerned citizens and organizations to express their disapproval at a Statehouse rally beginning at 11:30 a.m. tomorrow.

From the CAC's Dave Menzer: "Indiana is already one of the most polluted states in the country and ranks 11th in the world for overall CO2 emissions contributing more to global warming than most countries. The American Lung Association 2007 'State of the Air' report ranks Indianapolis as the 9th most air polluted city in the nation."

Coal is a dirty fuel, but coal long has ruled in Indiana. Checking large contributors to Gov. Daniels' campaign in the past -- as well as to previous administrations -- one finds that the big coal corporations have been among the biggest swinging-dick donors. It's clear they know they have an "in" in Indiana, and they plan to keep more progressive fuel sources from being developed.

Anyone who has the time and inclination should attend the CAC's rally. Bring your lumps of coal and Santa hats. And say hello to John Blair, the Evansville area activist who has tirelessly fought for his part of the state to receive a cleaner bill of health.

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