WERU News Report 7/22/14

Producer/Host: Amy Browne

Segment 1: The South Portland city council voted last night to pass the an ordinance preventing tar sands exports from the harbor there. For several years environmentalists have expressed concerns that the direction of flow of an existing pipeline to Montreal might be reversed so that tar sands from Canada could be piped to the deep water port in South Portland. The extraction of tar sands has had a devastating environmental impact, and concerns about the potential dangers of piping the corrosive substance and the pollution caused by processing it were also cited as reasons for passing the ordinance. While the ordinance still could be overturned by referedum, the news this morning is being called historic by some, and is drawing attention from across the country. The Natural Resources Council of Maine has been working on bringing attention to the tar sands pipeline since 2009. Dylan Voorhees is NRCM’s Clean Energy and Global Warming Project Director:

Segment 2: The tar sands issue is also part of the wider movement for climate justice, which is taking hold on college campuses across the state, notably – as we’ve reported in the past – in the form of student-led pressure to divest from fossil fuel industries. Iris SanGiovanni is one of the organizers of that movement, and one of the resources she and other youth can tap into here in Maine is Pine Tree Youth Organizing. We spoke with Iris, and with Christine of PTYO, to learn more about that group, what they have to offer the community, and how the community can support their efforts: