Our growing and increasingly organized anti-coal campaign must be doing something right, friends: word has it from AP that the coal industry – spooked by the success of the increasingly powerful movement to stop the coal rush – is fighting back big time. The industry is spending big bucks – tens of millions of dollars! – running major advertising efforts and going on the political offensive this election year to try to ensure that whoever is elected in November, coal’s future will be secure.
Are we going to let them get away with it?!
I think not!
We’re already going toe-to-toe with the coal-front group “Americans for Balanced Energy Choices” on the ground in primary states. We’re fighting proposed coal plants across the country and beating back the coal rush. We’ve pushed banks to scrutinize investments in dirty energy. We’re spending our spring breaks fighting dirty energy extraction and mountain top removal at Mountain Justice Spring Break, and we’re going to be a force to be reckoned with in the 2008 elections. And now we’re talking about a nationally-unified “No Coal!” effort and nationwide actions against fossil fuels on Fossil Fools Day.
So it’s David-and-Goliath time folks: time to get out that slingshot and keep hammering on the giant – the coal industry. We’ve got them mighty uncomfortable if they are spending tens of millions of dollars to fight back.
And sure, we’re up against a giant, but remember that there are two kinds of power in the world (as my friend Jenny says): money and people. Well we might not have much of the former, but we’re certainly strong on the latter!
So here’s to people power, taking on an industry intent on peddling a dirty energy future and putting billion dollar coal companies on the defensive!
And here’s to our vision of a sustainable, just, and prosperous future that inspires us to seek alternatives to a dirty energy future and ignore the coal industry’s package of lies!
Keep fighting the fossil fools. As I say at WattHead, a sustainable, just, and prosperous energy future is possible, and we can make it real.
[Update 2/28/08: Here's a link to the Americans for Balanced Energy Choices ads running in Ohio right now and in Iowa during the Caucuses. One of these, the "Ohio Jobs Ad," attacks green jobs head on. ABEC is a coal-industry funded "astroturf" group, a fake grassroots organization that claims to have 1500,000 members, "people like you." When you click on the ABEC Supporters tab, you find out who ABEC, really is. Supporters including "America's Coal-based Electricity Providers:"
* AMEREN Corporation
* American Electric Power
* Arch Coal, Inc.
* Arkansas Electric Cooperative Corporation
* Associated Electric Cooperative, Inc.
* Basin Electric Power Cooperative
* BHP Billiton
* Buckeye Industrial Mining Co.
* Buckeye Power, Inc.
* Burlington Northern Santa Fe Corp.
* CONSOL Energy Inc.
* CSX Corp.
* Detroit Edison
* Duke Energy
* First Energy Corporation
* Foundation Coal Corp.
* Hoosier Energy
* Norfolk Southern Co.
* Peabody Energy Corp.
* Southern Co.
* Tri-state Generation & Transmission Assn. Inc.
* Union Pacific Railroad
* Western Farmers Electric Cooperative
Oh yah, people just like you and me. We're all CEOs of major coal companies, right?!]