Clean Air for Bridgeport, and a Coal-Free Connecticut

Coal pollutes. A century and a half of burning coal for our nation’s power supply has contributed to dirty air in cities, global climate change that is bringing stronger storms to Connecticut, and environmental devastation in Appalachia. In recent years, however, communities and power suppliers have begun to realize that our electricity needs can be met with a mix of renewable energy, cleaner fossil fuels like natural gas, and reducing demand by improving energy efficiency.

These days, coal plants provide only 10 percent of New England’s electricity. But the few remaining plants, like Bridgeport Harbor Station, have a huge impact on our region’s air quality and public health. A brand-new report from the American Lung Association has identified Fairfield County’s air as some of the unhealthiest in the United States. Pollution from coal plants especially hurts our most vulnerable citizens: it exacerbates asthma among children, contributes to a host of respiratory and cardiac conditions among the elderly, and is often worst in neighborhoods that are struggling economically.

Fortunately, there is now a major effort underway to stop the burning of coal in Bridgeport. Bridgeport Harbor Station’s operating permit has expired and is up for renewal. Community organizations and local, state and national environmental advocates have come together to form the Healthy CT Alliance, with the goal of ensuring that the plant’s license to burn coal is not renewed. Partners include Connecticut Fund for the Environment, the Conservation Law Foundation, Fairfield County Environmental Justice Network, Sierra Club – Connecticut, Toxics Action Center, and 350 Connecticut.

There is a public hearing on the permit next week. Come make your voice heard!

Monday, May 14, 2012

6:30 – 10:00 PM

Bridgeport City Hall Annex

999 Broad St, Bridgeport

There will be presentations by PSEG (the operators of Bridgeport Harbor Station), the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, and the Healthy CT Alliance, followed by time for public comment.

Please join with us to ensure that this relic of a bygone era is retired. Together, we can make a difference to clean our air, improve our quality of life, and make Connecticut a coal-free state.

Email for more information about the Bridgeport Coal campaign, the Healthy CT Alliance, or the upcoming hearing.

Posted by Laura McMillan, outreach associate for CFE/Save the Sound

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