“No more oil spills! We want windmills!” they chanted, holding signs and waving to motorists passing by the Vance Monument in downtown Asheville on Thursday, May 20. The group was protesting the BP oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, which cost 11 workers their lives when the rig exploded last April and continues to spew thousands of gallons of crude into the ocean.
“Over the past few weeks, we have witnessed the terrible effects of our dirty, dangerous energy economy, from the mining disaster in West Virginia to the recent BP oil drilling disaster on the Gulf Coast,” said Russ Anderson, co-organizer of the event. “Students and young people are ready for a safe clean energy future, and we are to protect our future from the worst effects of climate change and dirty energy disasters.”
Emma Hutchins, UNCA Student and co-president of Allied Students for a Healthy Environment, added, ““With each day the United States fails to move towards a clean energy future, dangerous, dirty energy continues to hurt our communities, our health, and our environment. Polluters must pay, not the people who have been hit hardest.”