UPDATE: VISIT ILOVEMOUNTAINS.ORG/STATEACTIONS FOR THE LATEST INFORMATION
By protecting ratepayers from potential rate spikes, and moving the state away from this ecologically destructive and morally reprehensible practice, this bill is “going to save taxpayers money in the long run, and it is simply the right thing to do,” according to lead sponsor Harrison.
Passage of the bill would be a significant step by North Carolinians towards a more just and sustainable energy economy. It builds on the momentum that has already begun; North Carolinians especially have already made significant strides towards this future:
* North Carolina’s Salem Presbytery was the first to pass a resolution in opposition to mountaintop removal – a resolution that was carried to the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) and passed in 2006.
* In 2002, North Carolina passed The Clean Smokestacks Act, which mandated the implementation of modern pollution control devices at North Carolina’s coal-fired power plants. The Act was among the strongest air pollution control measures in the country at the time; thanks in part to the Clean Smokestacks Act, North Carolina’s Attorney General was able to win a lawsuit against the Tennessee Valley Authority for allowing harmful air pollution in to our fair state.
With AMPA, North Carolina has the opportunity to maintain its status as a leader in creating and passing legislation that places the lives, health and safety of its citizens, as well as those of Appalachia, above the desires of coal companies and corporate interests.
“I am firmly convinced that mountaintop removal is a moral issue that begs our hearts and minds to do the right thing,” Senator Steve Goss said. “When this bill becomes law in North Carolina, once again we will take our place as a leader in the nation concerning environmental issues.”
“We are part of the cycle of coal consumption, and we must take responsibility for Georgia being the nation’s greatest consumer of mountaintop coal,” observed Representative Oliver, Georgia’s lead sponsor of the bill, which also place a five-year moratorium on the permitting and construction of new coal-fired power plants in the state. “We need to step back and look at how we can do things differently.”
Links to check out:
Select news coverage:
Georgia: Appalachian Mountains Preservation Act
Kentucky: The Stream Saver Bill
Tennessee: The Scenic Vistas Protection Act
Coming Down the pipe:
South Carolina, Maine, and New York!
Oh, and in case you havent heard, the Federal Clean Water Protection Act is back!