Though Maryland currently gets 60 percent of its power from coal, Marylanders have spoken loud and clear that they want clean energy and green jobs from offshore wind. The Sierra Club and its allies are organizing town halls around the state this month and next, working from the grassroots up to advance offshore wind in Maryland.
A broad coalition of groups including the League of Women Voters, Interfaith Power & Light, and the Club’s Maryland Chapter held a town hall meeting on offshore wind in the Hillcrest Heights Community of Prince George’s County. The predominately African American community sits just a few miles upwind of the polluting GenOn Potomac River coal plant in Virginia (recently scheduled for retirement, thanks to the Beyond Coal Campaign's tireless efforts). The event drew a diverse crowd, from Prince George’s community members to lifelong Sierra Club members, all of whom want to bring cleaner air and jobs to their community.
Lieutenant Governor Anthony Brown and State Delegate Aisha Braveboy addressed the 90-person crowd and expressed their enthusiastic support for bringing offshore wind to Maryland. A panel of experts explained how transitioning from coal to offshore wind could improve public health, advance climate justice, and bring good jobs to the county.
(Image: Kari Fulton, of the Environmental Justice and Climate Change Initiative, speaking about climate justice. Seated, left to right, are moderator Jesse Alexander and panelists Fred Tutman of Patuxent Riverkeeper and Delegate Aisha Braveboy.)