The South Brunswick Township Council unanimously passed a resolution on Tuesday calling on the Murphy administration to reject the proposal by Competitive Power Ventures (CPV) to build a new gas-fired power plant in Woodbridge.
With the 3-0 vote, the council became the tenth elected government body to oppose the proposal, which has generated significant community opposition and large protests earlier this year.
“Allowing CPV to build this gas plant will lock New Jersey residents into decades more of climate destroying emissions and health destroying pollution,” said Holly Cox, a Food & Water Watch volunteer who brought the resolution to the Council for their consideration. “As more and more climate disasters occur, the need to transition to clean renewable energy is obvious. At this point, building any fossil fuel plant does not make financial sense or common sense.”
Resolutions opposing the power plant have passed in Edison, Highland Park, Hoboken, Perth Amboy, Franklin, Sayreville and Rahway. The Somerset County Commissioners and the Highland Park Board of Education also adopted resolutions opposing the dirty energy project.
“You would be joining a collective group that is quite strong and growing,” Rachel Dawn Davis, a public policy and justice organizer with Waterspirit, told the Council prior to their vote.
“People sometimes wonder what residents can do at the local level, but efforts like this added up together will make a world of difference,” said John Hsu, the Edison resident who helped champion the first municipal resolution opposing the plant.
The plant would pose a threat to the health of residents all over Central Jersey, as well as Staten Island, but communities that are already deemed overburdened would face the worst of the pollution.
“This plant would go against environmental justice,” said Reverend Donna Stewart, President of the NAACP Perth Amboy Area Branch, a group that was instrumental in passing a resolution against the plant there. “The NAACP is a civil rights organization, and environmental justice falls under civil rights of our people.”
CPV has proposed building a new 630-megawatt gas power plant in the Keasbey section of Woodbridge, a community already overburdened with pollution. If approved, this new facility – which would be adjacent to an existing CPV plant – could emit nearly 2.3 million tons of greenhouse gasses each year, along with hundreds of tons of toxic air pollutants – including carbon monoxide, ammonia, sulfur dioxide, volatile organic compounds, sulfuric acid, and lead.