Thursday, October 27, 2011

The environmental movement takes on coal country By Andrew Leonard, Grist

Tuesday, Oct 25, 2011 12:58 PM 00:37:07 PDT

The environmental movement takes on coal country

Activist Flavia de la Fuente talks about why it's crucial to combat climate change in politically hostile areas

Flavia de la Fuente
Flavia de la Fuente (Credit: Fiorenza Comunian)
This article originally appeared on Grist.
There are probably easier things one could do than to organize against the construction of a coal-powered electricity plant near the Gulf Coast refinery town of Corpus Christi, Texas. But Flavia de la Fuente wouldn’t want to be doing them. After the life-long Californian graduated from UCLA in the spring of 2010, she applied for a job as an organizer with the Sierra Club. She was offered her pick of three options — San Francisco, Washington D.C., or Texas.
The choice was easy. “I firmly believe in going to the trenches and being where the fight is,” says de la Fuente. That meant Texas. In the 1960s, she points out, the civil rights movement flourished where it was “hardest” — in the Deep South. The same, she hopes, will be true for the environmental movement.
“If we can turn things around on climate change where things are the hardest, then we can win,” she says. “And there are a lot of people in Texas who really, really want to win.”
Andrew Leonard
Andrew Leonard is a staff writer at Salon. On Twitter, @koxinga21. More Andrew Leonard

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