31 Comments for this article

Tags: , , , , , , ,

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The Port City sees many ships come and go, but one that arrived today hopes to leave a lasting impression.

Greenpeace activists and supporters want a coal-free future. That’s why the Arctic Sunrise is here in Wilmington, starting its east coast ship tour urging companies like the L.V. Sutton Plant to quit coal now

While the Arctic Sunrise is in town, Greenpeace plans a peaceful protest including a candlelight vigil against the Sutton power plant. Although Progress Energy already plans to convert the plant from coal to natural gas in 2014, Greenpeace coal campaigner Kelly Mitchell said that’s not enough.

“It’s promising to see Sutton quit coal, absolutely,” Mitchell said. “I think it’s a sign that utility companies are realizing there are smarter ways to power our future than coal, but we want to make sure that power is replaced with truly clean energy like wind and solar and through efficiency.”

Progress Energy argues the conversion is good for the environment.

“We actually think our Sutton plant is a great example of our firm commitment to improving the environment by modernizing our generation fleet, and switching from coal to natural gas will actually result in a 40 to 50 percent drop in CO2 emissions,” Progress Energy spokesman Drew Elliott said.

The power plant is not the environmental group’s only target in town. Greenpeace is also joining the fight to stop Titan Cement from building a plant near Castle Hayne.

“This is a plant that’s going to burn 150,000 tons of coal per year,” Greenpeace climate and energy campaigner Robert Gardener said. “Coal is a thing of the past. It’s just not something that we need to continue to lean on as we transition toward this 21st economy.”

Mitchell said, “The people of North Carolina, the people around this country, deserve to breathe clean air and clean water, and it’s not until we get away from dirty fossil fuels that that’s really going to be the case.”

Mitchell calls the fight against coal the fight of our lifetime.

Bob Odom, project manager for Titan subsidiary Carolinas Cement Company, issued this statement Thursday evening:

“The Carolinas Cement plant will be one of the most technologically sophisticated and environmentally conscious cement plants in the world. Cement is the main ingredient in concrete, which is one of the most sustainable building materials available and second only to water as the most widely used material in the world. We believe that a true environmentalist would want cement produced right here in the United States, where companies like Carolinas Cement are strictly regulated and must conduct business in the most environmentally sensitive manner possible. Shifting cement production offshore to nations that are much more loosely regulated will have a much more negative impact on the health and safety of the global environment.”

As for the ship, you can tour the Arctic Sunrise this weekend from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.


Comment on this Story

  • Guest

    While I support her right to free speech-let’s not forget that
    Kayne Darrell one of the defendant’s in the Stop Titan lawsuit has been very partisan in supporting ultra liberal causes and candidates. One can support her right to free speech while reminding her that using a non partisan group at times to advance partisan causes isnt right either. Titan has made mistakes but Ms Darrell isnt Mother Teresa either. So maybe both canhindsight act more appropriately in the future.

  • Guest

    “Jessica” did have a better plan. “China”
    Maybe if you could make a difference there then people here would take you more seriously. Please tell me what Greenpeace has accomplished…ACTUALLY accomplished, not what they were hoping to accomplish or suggested to someone, or what might happen one day as a result of something Greenpeace has done.
    Did it ever occure to you that maybe our drinking water is contaminated (especially in this area) by septic tank run-off or all these sewer spills? Everyone is screaming about the Titan Cement Plant in Castle Hayne and how the mercury levels are going to go up in the river. Do you know how many times in 2009 and 2010 that the Northeast Cape Fear River (where Titan wants to operate) was CLOSED due to a NO CONTACT bulletin that was issued because the water was contaminated by human waste? To spell it out for you “septic tank run-off” and “sewer spills”. How about we revamp the current sewer system and start with that then work our way up to shuting down Sutton Power Plant and putting hundreds of people out of work.
    As far as the toxic sludge issue name a place that is full of toxic sludge then tell me what has leaked more often that sludge pit or the local sewer system? The sewer system around here leaks into the our streams, rivers and wetlands all the time. Were do you think the workers in the fields use that bathroom? Maybe you can get Green Giant or Del Monte to put ports potties in the fields. Oh, but wait, that means there would be chemicals to treat human waste near our crops and a truck powered by diesel fuel which will kill our world would have to drive out into the fields, exposing our crops to more polutants, suck the waste out and dispose of it into a toxic sludge pit for processing. See where I’m going with this…rob Peter to pay Paul…it’s a matter of finding balance. As long as there are humans there will be hog farms with sludge and a need for fossil fuels, etc. It’s unrealistic to think you can do away with these things. Minimize them? Yes. But to think we can completely eliminate them and go back to living like we did 100-300 years ago with a horse and cart and boiling water over a fire supplied firewood so you can take your MONTHLY bath….no way…there would be some idiot around complaining about how the forests are almost gone and how we need to stop chopping down the forest for wood and how we need to start drilling for oil and mining for coal so that way people could take a bath once a week instead of once a month.

  • Jessica

    One word for ya…CHINA!!!

    Hey Greenpeace…how about you go somewhere that REALLY needs you? Even better why don’t you stay there until you actually acomplish what you are preaching, instead of running around and b**ching at everyone else for not doing your work for you?
    And just think, while you’re in China you can work on converting your ship into a bio-fuel burning machine instead of a fossil fuel burning, carbon machine!! I’m sure you can find plenty of used oil at all of those McDonalds.

    I mean how much diesel and oil do YOU burn every hour, day, week, month, year or heck, even while your ship (aka Eyesore) sits at port. Where does the water from your bilge pump go? What do you do with your trash? Better yet, what do you do with your millions of gallons of HUMAN WASTE?? Do you treat it and bring it back to port, or do you DUMP IT RAW INTO OUR OCEANS???
    I wonder how much your RAW WASTE affects the oceans eco system? What’s that you say?? You don’t dump enough to make a difference? Hmmm…where have I heard that before? Oh I know!!! I’ve heard that from the power plants, train lines, truck lines, heck even everyday people such as myself who don’t drive hybrid vehicles. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander…to paraphrase: “pull the splinter out of your own eye” before you star b*tching at me to pull my splinter out.

  • Guest

    That a couple of these post seem to be written “locals”?? If you ask me by the ingnorant statements in their posts it looks like some Greenpeace hippies have found WWAY’s website and are posing as locals…just saying.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    Greenpeace is nothing more than a business whose leaders make their money by constantly braying about the sky falling.

    I’d rather put up with ten coal-fired cement kilns than your incessant hysteria based upon psuedo-science and “gee-what if” fantasies.

  • John

    Add question # 13 to the list………..WHAT is “Guest461” doing to help? It is really easy to point fingers at those who are willing to try, even if they are not always successful.

    There is an old saying……If you are not part of the solution then you are part of the problem.

    Guest461, you should be really glad that Greenpeace is not on a quest to eradicate stupity. Otherwise your days would be numbered.

  • Marsha Reed

    For all of you people who are constantly bad mouthing the Greenpeace people, don’t you realize that what they( we ) do is not just for our benefit? Its also for you and your children and your Grandchildren and for our beautiful planet? Sure maybe we are not perfect but we are doing the very best that we can. May I ask what all of you are doing?
    These huge companies that think they can buy up alot of land and then destroy it or fill it up with toxic sludge. Can they guarentee that it will not leak out into the wetlands? Can they be sure that it wont evaporate into the air that we ALL breath? Can they promise that it wont soak into our land that we grow our food in? Can they promise that it wont contaminate the water that our children and us all drink? I dont think so. There are many tests that have already been done that shows how bad our drinking water already is. Awhile back there was a list of the 10 states that have the WORST and most dangerous drinking water and North Carolina was right up there in the top 10. So this proves to us that these companies dont really care about us, they only care about making money.
    Many many people are sick and dying already, they have horrible breathing problems and all kinds of different cancers. It WILL only get worse. We cannot wait until is really IS to late. Someone has got to be brave and have the guts to take these huge rich businesses on. Every single Greenpeace person is more than willing to fight for our planet and our survival. It would be wonderful if you would stand with us and help us to save our planet.
    Or if YOU have a better plan, please use it.

  • Guest461

    …that despises hypocrites. The greenpeace junkies are nothing more than a bunch of lost hippies with a mangled purpose that goes so far beyond reality it isn’t even funny. Most of them have little education, warped knowledge and fit in a tiny, miniscule portion of a society of tree-hugging, un-realistic babblers.

    Now, it’s good to see that my post offers questions of reality, of hypocrisy and a definite lack of leading by example. My post offers forward the questions that any individual can easily find answers for, then make a determination of just how “green” the owl-savers really are! Then they will foster even less public support than exists today.

    Oh, and by the way…my high and mighty rump KNOWS the answers to these questions. Only trying to help wake up those that haven’t a clue as to how two-faced the greenpeace effort really is. The nice part is that this is only ONE small example of their hypocrisy and lack of adherance to their OWN standards they preach so loudly.

    So do you think the greenies would want to beat me up for confronting them with these obvious questions and points that directly counter their fanatical opposition to fossil fuels? Sure they would! Violence has often been an active tactic of the greenpeace movement. Perhaps, they should rename themselves, “Greenbullies”.

  • Guest2078

    Oh, so you’re one of THOSE people. Well here’s an answer. At this moment in time there is no available substitute for the diesel fuel required to run the ship. As far as sails go, you’re idea of a ship is very 17th century. This isn’t the Mayflower or some dinky little sail boat. It’s (ironically) a former sealing vessel that is now being used to do marine research. Solar cells… on a ship? Really? Have you seen how much free space there is on the deck of a ship? Not that much. Again: RESEARCH VESSEL. Lots of water crafts and tools for studies on deck. As for the rest of your questions, why don’t you just trot your high and mighty rump down to the Artic Sunrise and ask for yourself.

  • Guest

    I thought about taking a ride downtown to have a look at this ship but decided it wasn’t worth the cost of the parking space.

    While originally founded with a nobility of purpose, Greenpeace has degenerated into a haven for angry campus radicals who never got over their college daze angst.

    These greenies won’t rest until all of humankind is vegetating over a mushroom bed in the dark.

  • Guest461

    …ask a few relevant questions:
    1. Where are the all of the masts and sails for this vessel?
    2. Where are all of the solar cells for power generation on this vessel?
    3. What type of fuel propels this vessel and where does it come from?
    4. How many hundreds of thousands of gallons of this fuel does this vessel burn during a six week run to fend off the whale killers?
    5. How do you generate your onboard electricity for this vessel?
    6. What fuel runs these generators and where does it come from?
    7. How thousands of gallons of this fuel is consumed by these generators while this vessel is at sea for weeks at a time?
    8. How many hundreds of gallons of used, dirty oil is generated per year by your propulsion and power generators? Where does that oil come from? What do you do with all of this waste oil?
    9. Can I look at your bilges to see how many hundreds of gallons of oily water is in there? Do you discharge this bilge oil while at sea?
    10. What do you do with all of the human waste generated onboard?
    11. What do you do with all of the trash, food scraps and dunnage that is generated onboard while this vessel is at sea for weeks at a time?
    12. Does your onboard sonar affect any of the sea life it comes in contact with? How do you know?

    And this is only the beginning. There are literally thousands of questions regarding this sizeable vessels operation, efficiency (or lack thereof) and consistently essential use of fossil fuels for propulsion, day to day operations and navigation.

    Starting to get my point now?

  • guesty

    I wonder what these wacky jobs have done to their boat to make it environment friendly? Have they installed solar panels? How do they treat their on-board waste? What type of light bulbs do they have installed? I would be willing to bet these nuts need to do a little house keeping before marching at other doorsteps.

  • Guest

    They cite the need to get away from “dity fossil fuels”, I am curious as to exactly what “dirty fossil fuels” that ship uses in its travels around the world? It’s kind of hypocritic if you ask me.

  • Guest

    Drill Baby Drill!

Related News