On the day of the late-April Valmont Coal Plant protest protest, the Camera talked to protester Tom Weis by cell phone – while he was standing on top of a pile of coal at Valmont. Weis and four others were arrested that day, but they’re not done talking (or collecting funds for legal defense, for that matter).
Elephant journal recently talked to four of the Valmont Coal Plant protesters, Weis included, who are in hot water after trespassing on Xcel’s property.
A small group of protesters gathered at the Valmont power plant east of Boulder on Tuesday to protest the burning of coal for electricity.
The group was surprised when eco-hero Bill McKibben (founder of 350.org and an award-winning environmental journalist) dropped by. Later the police dropped by, too, which shouldn’t have come as a suprise.
In all, five people were arrested for second-degree trespassing. Those were the folks who actually climbed over Xcel’s fence (it’s rimmed with barbed wire) and unfurled a banner on the side of a coal pile that was waiting to be incenerated. The sign read “Renewables Now” and was accompanied by a pair of fake wind turbines.
Xcel didn’t find this all that amusing. In fact, spokesman Mark Stutz called the move stupid. Read more about the protest and watch a video at DailyCamera.com.
Front Range environmentalists gathered in Denver yesterday to tell the governor to quit “clowning around” when it comes to climate change.
The state’s air quality commission will take public comment tonight on Xcel Energy’s request to renew its air permit for the Cherokee coal plant in Denver. Earlier this year, Xcel also sought to renew its air permit for the Valmont coal plant in Boulder.
The clown-protesters — wearing wigs and Ritter masks — said that the state shouldn’t issue any permits until coal plants are forced to deal with their carbon dioxide emissions, but the state says it has no authority to do that.
Hundreds of folks turned out this weekend on their bikes and rode from downtwon Boulder to the Valmont coal plant as part of the “Power Past Coal” rally.
The event was one of more than 4,500 organized across the world as part of the 350.org global campaign.
Eric Robbins rode to Boulder’s Central Park on Saturday with a battery-powered amplifier strapped to the back of his Schwinn bicycle. The Beatles’ song “All You Need Is Love” blared from his speaker into a crowd of more than 200 cyclists busy chanting “power beyond coal.”
“We need to put an end to coal and promote the use of renewable energy,” Robbins said, preparing to ride to the Valmont power plant in east Boulder to raise awareness of global climate change and voice support for the plant’s closing. “It would be nice if this plant became a wind farm or a solar installation.” Read more
People all over the world are getting worked up about the number 350.
Here’s the deal: Scientists are say that atmospheric carbon dioxide emissions must stay below 350 ppm. Or we’re screwed. Now, carbon dioxide concentratoins are around 390. So, climate activists are saying, something’s gotta change.
This weekend, people in Boulder will join communities around the world by rallying around a number: 350.
There are more than 4,000 events planned for Saturday across 170 countries — including 300 events in China, 500-plus in Central and South America, and 1,500 across the United States — to call attention to the number, which stands for a concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide in parts per million.
Many scientists believe that the carbon dioxide concentration must stay below 350 ppm in order to keep the most traumatic consequences of global warming at bay. The carbon dioxide concentration hasn’t been that low since the late 1980s. Today, it’s at 387 ppm. Read more