A local group formed to inform the public of coal export proposals in Washington is hosting a public forum to educate people about the impacts of coal export trains on our community.

The ‘Power Past Coal Coalition,’ is a group of more than 50 organizations, including the Sierra Club, Climate Solutions, Spokane Riverkeeper and The Lands Council.

The Staet of Washington has set a date to move our last coal-fired power plant— TransAlta —off of coal. In what is being called a giant step backward, coal companies are now threatening to export tens of millions of tons of coal through the Pacific Northwest to foreign markets.

The coal export terminals proposed are in Cherry Point, Gray’s Harbor, and Longview, WA and would draw 50 or more coal trains through communities in Spokane County each day that could be more than 1.5 miles long. Some residents are concerned about the health, safety, and economic impacts of these projects.

A public forum on Thursday, Oct. 27 5:30-8:00 p.m. at the Lincoln Center, 1316 N. Lincoln St., will address this issue. City Council members Amber Waldref and Bob Apple will be on hand to speak, as will a Department of Environmental Quality Hydrogeologist and others.

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