Want to help stop Big Coal's plans to ship Wyoming/Montana coal through the Columbia Gorge by barge/rail—especially through North/Northeast Portland en route to Port of St. Helens for Asian markets?
Come to a meeting Wednesday, June 27 from 7:30 - 8:30 p.m. at 8325 N. Central in St. Johns, sponsored by the CAAC (Community Alliance Against Coal), and Columbia Riverkeeper. You can also join cyclists heading there in the Pedalpalooza Ride. The eight-mile route departs from 1821 SE Ankeny at 5:30 p.m.
Learn how Portland residents can defend the region from the proposed coal shipments on both the Washington/Oregon side of the Columbia River. One action is to line up canvassing teams to warn those along the railroad tracks of what Big Coal intends for that part of Portland.
Big Coal plans to run eight trains (120-125 gondolas) daily through North/Northeast Portland (and then run the empties back through the same neighborhood).
Coal trains through PDX bound for export terminals on the river threaten to pollute air, transportation, climate future, and the area's economy. In exchange, though these corporations are promising thousands of jobs, the reality is about 20 permanent jobs at each of the four terminals they're seeking on the Columbia.
Coal contains uranium, mercury, and arsenic. Its dust off the coal trains will coat houses, cars, yards over a 1.5 mile-range from the train tracks. Coal dust brings black-lung disease, mercury poisoning, asthma, adverse impact on eyes, and cancer. Promises by the shippers to spray surfactant on the open rail cars to keep it from blowing enroute to coal terminals mean using a highly toxic substance (usually coal slurry).
Other drawbacks of transporting coal through this corridor includes possible coal-car fires, derailments (10 since 2010), significant noise levels (96-100 decibels), screeching coal cars, idling engines, traffic tie-ups at railroad crossings, lower property values, and needing to wear dust masks for outdoor activities.
A major drawback from coal use whether in the U.S. or Asia is a major contribution to climate change (global warming). In selling it to Asian markets, coal use there will blow-back to the West Coast through the atmosphere, but also contribute to warming as well as the diseases and ailments listed above.