Delayed Coal Closures Harm Minority Communities’ Health, Indiana NAACP Warns
The state chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is urging Indiana legislators to defeat a bill that would harm the health of low-income and minority communities by the extending the operating life of nearby coal plants.
“We can’t overlook these communities and their needs as well just for the sake of others, when we are the ones breathing it in,” said La’Tonya Troutman, spokesperson for the NAACP’s LaPorte County branch. The NAACP added that keeping uneconomic coal plants open for longer would drive up energy bills for people who can least afford to pay them.
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The draft legislation “would require the state to review a plant closure, hold a public hearing, and issue a report on whether or not the closure is reasonable,” WBOI 98.1 reports. “Lawmakers also added a provision that would help former coal miners in Indiana find jobs.”
The local radio outlet says the Northern Indiana Public Service Company plans to keep its Michigan City coal plant open for another eight years.