This autumn, CIPL staff members, including The Rev. Will Scott, Program Director and Oakland resident Susan Stephenson, Executive Director have spoken before the Oakland City Council aimed at preventing coal exports.
CIPL is continuing to work with a broad coalition of Oakland residents and clergy to urge the Oakland City Council to prohibit the export of coal due to significant health and safety concerns.
Here’s a few recent stories on the issue featuring CIPL’s work:
October 19, 2015 Contact: Sage Welch, 415.453.0430
Oakland Faith Leaders Call on City Council to Reject Proposed Coal Exports
Congregations unite in opposition, despite industry efforts to
court faith community support
Oakland, Calif. – Over a dozen clergy leaders, including the Episcopal Bishop of California, are urging the Oakland City Council to reject a proposal allowing coal to be exported from the Oakland Army Base redevelopment project. Prominent faith leaders will tomorrow deliver a letter asking the Oakland City Council to honor the health and welfare of West Oakland residents, as well as the moral imperative to act on climate change, by barring the export of coal from the port. This show of opposition from the faith community comes despite reports of developers courting congregations to support the proposal.
“As a resident of West Oakland, a person with respiratory challenges and a faith leader, I am profoundly concerned about the health and environmental impacts of transporting coal through our city,” said Archdeacon of the diocese of California, Carolyn Bolton. “I strongly oppose the development of a coal terminal in our already vulnerable and highly impacted community.”
Opponents of the proposed plan cite dangers to local communities already suffering from poor air quality, including the health impacts of coal dust and concerns about linking the city’s economy to a sector facing rapid decline.
“As Bishop of California, I have made addressing climate change and environmental injustice a top priority of our diocese, which includes multiple congregations in Oakland,” said the Rt. Rev. Marc Andrus. “The burning of coal anywhere is a danger to global climate, not to mention the health of those nearby, and transporting coal through Oakland endangers our own vulnerable communities. I urge all people of goodwill to stand in opposition to coal exports from the Port of Oakland, for the sake of our common home.”
Also joining the opposition movement is Marvin Goodman, executive director of the Northern California Board of Rabbis. This show of interfaith unity comes after calls from diverse global religious leaders urging the world’s faithful to take action on climate change and cut greenhouse gas emissions.
The letter will be presented by California Interfaith Power & Light at Tuesday’s Oakland City Council meeting at Oakland City Hall.
Local faith leaders are available for comment – to schedule an interview, please contact the Rev. Will Scott at [email protected] or (415) 987-3029.
About California Interfaith Power & Light
The mission of California Interfaith Power & Light is to be faithful stewards of Creation by responding to global warming through the promotion of energy conservation, energy efficiency, and renewable energy. We are a network of 650 congregations statewide, and are an affiliate of the national Interfaith Power & Light campaign.