Coal Free Future Tour: Night at the Soapbox

by chris eaton

January 22, 2011

Arctic Sunrise

Last night was a blast. We began our Coal Free Future Tour stop in Wilmington, NC with an amazing concert fundraiser for the Stop Titan Action Network, a coalition of groups working to stop the building of the 4th largest cement plant in the nation. A plant that will burn coal for power.

Between bands and speakers, Robert Gardner, a Greenpeace Climate Campaigner, told me what it was all about:

Everywhere I go, I hear a story of looming environmental destruction. Here in Wilmington, they’ve got two. First off, the L.V. Sutton Steam Plant is part of North Carolina’s unfortunate reliance on coal-fired electricity. We’ve come to rally the community against dirty energy. Sutton’s towering smokestacks spewing two and a half million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere yearly are a tangible reminder that this plant needs to be shut down now. Second, Titan Cement wants to come and destroy over 1,000 acres of pristine wetlands, lock Wilmington into nearly 50 years of air pollution, smog, particulate matter, mercury poison, and other toxic emissions. This plant would also burn nearly 150,000 tons of coal yearly, limestone and old tires. This plant must be stopped. The people of Wilmington have mobilized massive public opposition to this plant. Titan is in for the fight of its life.

So tonight, Greenpeace is joining together with Stop Titan and University of North Carolina ECO, for an evening of music at The Soapbox in downtown Wilmington.

After talking to Robert, I also met Mike Giles of the North Carolina Coastal Federation. He was able to tell me more about the proposed Titan cement plant:

The concert proceeded splendidly with several great speaker’s from Greenpeace, Stop Titan and UNCWCO (a local student group) and everyone enjoyed the bands, Ponchos from Peru, Bag of Toys and Fractal Farm.

However, I have to say that anti-mountain top removal activist, Mickey McCoy, stole the show (I’ll post the video as soon as I get it uploaded!). Check it out!

By chris eaton

chris is the Senior Digital Campaigns Manager at Greenpeace USA. He's passionate about building movements and connecting change makers through digital storytelling. Follow him on Twitter at @chr15_eat0n.

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