44 Anti-Coal Activists Arrested at North Carolina Power Plant Protest

stop cliffside coal protest photo

photo: Stop Cliffside

Police arrested 44 anti-coal activists engaged in acts of civil disobedience today to protest expansion of Duke Energy's Cliffside coal-fired power plant. Those arrested will likely be charged with second degree trespassing. Event organizers Stop Cliffside have declared to protest a success:Duke Energy CEO Jim Rogers has publicly said that all of Duke's coal power plants will be shut down by 2050, but considering that many climate change scientists consider shutting down coal-fired power plants to be the single greatest thing that can be done to curb emissions, Rogers' promises have been received with little fanfare.

John Deans, Greenpeace North Carolina organizer:

It's absolutely hypocritical for Rogers to talk about sustainability and responsibility when Cliffside locks in dangerous climate pollution for another 50 years. If they really want to protect the planet and create jobs, they’d invest in wind and solar power instead of more polluting energy.

Construction of the expansion of the Cliffside plant is expected to cost $2.4 billion. An estimated 6 million tons of CO2 will be emitted from the plant every year for the entirety of its 50 years in operation.

According to a study done by Dr John Blackburn, retired chair of Duke University's Economics Department, projected energy demand in North Carolina can be met by expanding energy efficiency measures alone.

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