North Portland group organizing anti-coal rally
By Erik Siemers
The North Portland Coal Committee is organizing a demonstration on August 18 to protest the proposed coal export terminals along the Columbia River.
A North Portland citizens group fighting proposed Columbia River coal terminals is gathering troops for an August rally in which they plans to march down North Lombard Street in a parade of black balloons.
The North Portland Coal Committee, led by Richard Ellmyer, is trying to bring attention to what it perceives as the negative after-effects of the three coal export terminals proposed along the Columbia River.
The committee on August 18th is hoping to draw large crowds from noon to 3 p.m. to the St. Johns railroad cut at Lombard Street just east of the Fred Meyer store, where they will give out black balloons and handouts and be sent to march eastward.
It’s the second major anti-coal rally in Portland in recent weeks following a May rally in downtown Portland led by Robert F. Kennedy Jr..
The three projects — one near the Port of Longview, Wash., another at the Port of St. Helens near Clatskanie, and a third that touches both the Port of St. Helens and the Port of Morrow near Boardman — combined would represent more than $1 billion in new investment. The projects’ developers bill them as economic generators, providing jobs and investment to communities that sorely need it, while providing a new avenue to Asia for coal producers in the Powder River Basin of Montana and Wyoming.
But opponents fear the effect of increased rail traffic, diesel emissions, coal dust and the potential damage to Oregon’s reputation as a steward of environmental sustainability.
“We’re expecting a large group and we’ve invited everybody to come who’s got a sense of what’s going on here,” Ellmyer said.
If you are commenting using a Facebook account, your profile information may be displayed with your comment depending on your privacy settings. By leaving the 'Post to Facebook' box selected, your comment will be published to your Facebook profile in addition to the space below.