Teachers Union and LULAC Join Las Brisas Opponents

Two new groups, the local American Federation of Teachers union and the League of United Latin American Citizens Council No. 1 (LULAC) have joined the coalition formed in opposition to Corpus Christi’s proposed Las Brisas Power Plant, reports the Caller-Times.

At a membership meeting last week, 38 members of the teacher’s union voted unanimously to oppose the plant.

Referring to the area’s air quality, union president Juan Guerra said:

“We already think we have a problem,” Guerra said. “We just can’t support something that could push us more over the edge.”

LULAC has sponsored a new billboard, located at a prime location on the Crosstown Expressway,which accuses the proposed plant of environmental discrimination.

lasbrisasbillboardIt’s no secret that these types of facilities get built in poor neighborhoods, meaning that the poorest people have to breathe the dirtiest air.  Historically underprivileged groups such as racial minorities and residents of economically disadvantaged areas bear an inequitable burden of environmental impacts, yet

Kathleen Smith, managing partner of the plant’s parent company, Chase Power, said company officials are…unclear on what environmental discrimination means.

I think it means, Miss Kathleen, that Chase Power would never dare to build this kind of dirty facility near a wealthy, predominantly white neighborhood like Preston Hollow (where the Bushes are moving into in Dallas) — because they know they’d never get away with it.  Though I really wish they would try — if more sectors of the population felt the threat of living near a coal-fired power plant, we could more quickly move towards a reality where coal plants aren’t acceptable in anyone’s backyard.  Environmental justice tends to be the elephant in the room that no one wants to offer a chair, but to feign ignorance of “what environmental discrimination means” is flat out insulting.

Three cheers to LULAC and the American Federation of Teachers union for joining the fight.