NY Activists Hold Hudson River Flotilla Protest Against Danskammer Plant

The Danskammer expansion proposal threatens public health and water and air quality, and locks New York into a fossil fuel future

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Climate and Energy

For Immediate Release

This afternoon, 90 activists representing Food & Water Watch, Hudson River Sloop Clearwater, Two Row and other members of the Stop Danskammer Coalition took to the water to protest the Danskammer fracked gas plant expansion proposal currently under review by the New York State Siting Board. Activists deployed the historic sloops Woody Guthrie and Clearwater in a multiple hour on-water protest against the proposal.

The proposal currently under review is from Wall Street-backed private equity firm, Tiger Infrastructure LLC, who has filed an application to replace the current Danskammer peaker plant, with a brand new, fully operational fracked gas plant. Speakers at a press conference held in tandem with the protest highlighted additional concerns with the proposal’s threats to public health and water and air quality. If approved, the plant will go from running just 5% of the year to over 70%, increasing exposure to dangerous pollutants including carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, sulfur dioxides, methane, and cancer-causing particulate matter.

Danskammer’s expansion proposal has come under heavy criticism from environmental advocates, who see the fight as a test of New York’s landmark Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, which set bold targets for statewide emissions reductions. Activists argue an approval of the Danskammer project would entrench fossil fuels in New York’s energy grid at the very time the state needs to rapidly transition off of dirty, polluting fossil fuels.

“Danskammer is a test for New York’s climate goals, directly pitting Wall Street against the people,” said Food & Water Watch Hudson Valley Organizer Emily Skydel. “New York must rapidly move away from fossil fuels, and that means shuttering polluting fracked gas plants, not building more. New Yorkers came out today to spend multiple hours out on the water in the hot sun to make our voices heard. We do not want a bigger, badder Danskammer — we want it closed. Governor Cuomo must direct the DEC to deny Danskammer its expansion permits.”

“A new Danskammer would bring us backwards, not forwards, in terms of meeting our climate goals. A new Danskammer would have New York abandon, not strengthen, our position as a climate leader. A new Danskammer would move against the steps we have taken to reduce our carbon emissions,” said Matt Salton, Environmental Action Associate at Hudson River Sloop Clearwater. “We stand in opposition to the Danskammer fracked gas power plant which would be in direct contradiction to New York’s CLCPA.”

“I’m here to represent a group devoted to passing on an intact, shared and healthy world to future generations,” said Andrew Feron of the Two Row Camp. “Creation is for all of us — not just for a few of us right now. What fracking leaves in its wake is nothing we can pass on to the future. Danskammer is about how they can make energy now for the right now, without any concern for the future.”

The Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is accepting public comments on the Danskammer plant expansion proposal through August 29th.

Contact: Phoebe Galt, PG[email protected]