Another coal project bites the dust! Here’s what’s next

Did you hear the big news? Arch Coal abandoned their dream of coal mining in Otter Creek, Montana. Arch wanted to mine in Otter Creek to supply coal for the proposed Millennium Bulk Terminals coal export project in Longview, Washington. This is a major blow to Millennium’s coal export plan and strike two for Arch coal – co-owner of Millennium Bulk Terminals; in January, Arch declared bankruptcy.
 
But big coal still has some fight left—and they are looking at the proposed Millennium Bulk Terminals coal export project in Longview, Washington as their glimmer of hope. This project would lock us into decades more coal mining, coal trains and carbon pollution, which is why we must act again to stop this proposal. Public hearings are slated for this spring and we need you to make a statement. Sign your comment against coal export today and stay tuned for Millennium’s public hearing dates.
 
Allies in our Power Past Coal coalition help explain the significance of yesterday’s announcement:
Vanessa Braided Hair, Northern Cheyenne tribal member and co-founder of the grassroots organization ecoCheyenne, had this to say of the Otter Creek mine victory: "A major victory for our homelands, the people and future generations. Arch Coal's permanent removal of their permit application means there is hope, hope for our people and our Cheyenne way of life. At this time, with deep appreciation and gratitude we reflect on all the hard work and prayers for our homelands and Cheyenne people."
 
Les Anderson, Vice President of Landowners and Citizens for a Safe Community in Longview, WA said, "Arch Coal and Millennium are dragging down our industrial waterfront with a coal export project that's never going to happen. It's been six years and all we've seen is from the coal industry is company lies and bankruptcy. Arch Coal and Millennium are standing in the way of real economic progress for Longview.”
 
Dawson Dunning, a Northern Plains Resource Council member whose family has ranched on Otter Creek for over a century said, “The writing was on the wall. It was only a matter of time before this project collapsed. All of us in Montana are fortunate that it collapsed before this gigantic mine opened up and a productive ranching valley was destroyed.
 
Kate McBride, City Councilmember from Hood River, OR, said, “What happens in Wyoming with coal has impacts here in the gorge given the coal companies’ last-gasp plans to export that coal abroad. The City of Hood River opposes coal export terminal proposals as these would pollute the Columbia River with coal and impact our residents’ health, safety, and the local economy.  We can do better.”
 
In the face of a permanent decline in domestic coal consumption, and with China, the world's top coal consumer, reporting a significant decline in the demand for coal, the prospects for U.S. coal exports are dim. But this is not the time to ease up. If we want a clean and safe energy future, we need to stop coal export. Sign your comment against coal export todayand stay tuned for public hearing dates for the Millennium Bulk Terminals coal export proposal.
 
Together we will create a thriving future!
Joëlle Robinson's picture

Field Director

, Climate Solutions

Joëlle engages citizens and diverse constituencies—faith, health, veteran, youth, parents, sportsmen, business—to make their voices heard for climate solutions. She led local field work collaboration with our partners toward passing a federal climate bill, and is currently working to ensure we stop any coal export from the U.S. West Coast.

Joëlle was the Regional Outreach Coordinator of National Wildlife Federation where she focused on mobilizing hunters, anglers and concerned citizens around solutions to global warming. Previous work with Climate Solutions includes the NW Climate Connections partnership, serving as the Field Assistant for the successful Clean Cars campaign, and Field Director of the Renewable Fuel Standard, which passed in April 2006.

She is a board member of Earth Ministry and on the Advisory Board for the Seattle Area Happiness Initiative. She previously served on the Solar Washington board and Sierra Club Executive Committee.

Joëlle is a Northwest native who loves to hike, bike, dance, paraglide, and travel. Her favorite quote is “Hope is borne of participating in hopeful solutions.” — Marianne Williamson.