By Jeff Harnisch
The Sierra Club North Star Chapter brought the voices of nearly 5,000 concerned Minnesotans to the doorstep of Xcel Energy today. Press events held outside Xcel’s headquarters in downtown Minneapolis and offices in St. Cloud highlighted a comment drive which began this summer and continued through Minnesota’s Great Minnesota Get-Together. The press events also kicked off a weeklong multi-media ad campaign that will run throughout the state in the Star Tribune, Minnesota Daily, St. Cloud-Times, Sherburne County Citizen and on Facebook.
Xcel Energy has heard the voices of its customers but nevertheless proposes the continuation of coal power at its Becker-based Sherco coal plant. Sierra Club is encouraging Minnesotans to call on the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission to require Xcel Energy to replace Sherco 1& 2 with clean energy. Sherco is Minnesota’s largest polluter and should not be a part of Minnesota’s energy future – we have an obligation to lead the way forward in clean energy policy.
The comment period for this issue in front of Minnesota’s Public Utilities Commission will end on October 1st, and in this vital final push the Sierra Club will call upon Minnesotans to make their voices heard. Click here to submit a comment.
In the wake of recent EPA proposals to cap carbon emissions from coal plants, it is clear that we need to take action now to address climate change. Minnesota can take the lead at the state level by demonstrating a commitment to clean alternatives as part of our larger tradition of prioritizing public health and a high quality of life.
Sherco 1 and 2 emit particle pollution and toxic mercury at some of the highest levels in our country and our response must be the development of clean energy technology and green jobs. This can only occur, however, if the PUC requires Xcel Energy replaces 2 of the units at Sherco and move forward with 21st century solutions to Minnesota’s energy needs. Click here to submit a comment today.
Jeff Harnisch is a Clean Energy intern with the Sierra Club North Star Chapter.