Newburgh, NY — Last night, forty activists and local residents rallied at the site of the Danskammer LLC fracked gas plant in Newburgh to protest fossil fuel powered plants statewide. One week after the New York state panel recommended a moratorium on fossil fuel plants, advocates urged the passage of A6761A/S5939A, which would codify the panel’s recommendation in state law. If passed, the legislation would prohibit the development of any new major electric generating facility that would be powered in whole or part by any fossil fuel.
In addition to legislative action, activists urged Governor Cuomo to heed the advice of his Climate Advisory Council, and take immediate executive action to halt the permitting processes of current fossil fuel plants seeking expansion permits including the Danskammer plant in Newburgh. Emily Skydel, Hudson Valley Organizer with Food & Water Watch, states:
“New Yorkers demand a fossil free future, and it needs to start right here in Newburgh with the closure of the Danskammer plant. Our Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act requires moving off fossil fuels, Governor Cuomo’s own Climate Advisory Council recommends it, and New Yorkers ourselves have been demanding it for years. Our legislature must take prompt action to pass A6761A/S5939A.”
“The Danskammer project is like tyrannosaurus rex — extinct but still dangerous,” said Amy Kletter of Ulster Activists. “Polluting fossil fuel energy production is a thing of the past. We need to stop these projects and move quickly to a future of renewable, sustainable projects and conservation!”
“The legislature hasn’t passed a major climate bill since 2019 with the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. With three weeks left of session they are on track to skip another year while the climate emergency continues to wreak havoc,” said Michaelangelo Pomarico, Co-Chair for Orange County of the Mid Hudson Valley DSA. “The Mid Hudson Valley DSA urges swift action from the state legislature to pass A6761A/S5939A to stop all future fossil fuel projects like Danskammer, and A1466A/S6453 to create over 50k jobs building the publicly owned renewable infrastructure we need to make good on the promise of a just transition.”
“New York’s legislature has a responsibility to pass A6761A/S5939A,” said Aura Lopez Zarate-Raiz, Organizer for Planned Parenthood of Greater New York Action Fund. “It is urgent and needed in order to stop harmful projects like Danskammer. Community members and recent events have made it clear that we do not need or want a fracked gas power plant in our backyards. Scientific evidence and people’s personal stories have also shown the danger of fossil fuels to the environment and the negative impacts it has on our health. People deserve to live healthy lives and raise their families in a safe environment without the effects of fossil fuels.”
“The construction of this plant violates the most basic values of the people of this state: it actively works against the public health of our communities, it damages the natural beauty of the Hudson Valley, and it violates New York’s State’s commitment to renewable energy. As such, Nobody Leaves Mid-Hudson joins our neighbors to stand up to the construction of Danskammer,” said Rene Mejia Jr., Organizer with Nobody Leaves Mid-Hudson.
Activists will hold a second day of action in New York City today to urge action on A6761A/S5939A and the rapid transition off a fossil fuel power grid.