Around 100 people gathered Saturday in Pritchard Park for the second environmental protest there in as many days. Organized by Safe Alternatives for Future Energy (SAFE) in the Carolinas, the protest was timed to mark the anniversary of the disaster at Japan’s Fukushima nuclear power plant following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami.
Also at the forefront of the protest’s agenda was the proposed construction of nuclear reactors in Gaffney, SC, by Duke Energy. Gaffney is 60 miles from Asheville, according to a SAFE press release.
Mary Olson, spokeswoman for NIRS, said she believes that the catastrophic failure of the reactors at Fukushima “was no accident,” citing connections between the reactors and US corporations, specifically General Electric. The protest included speeches by officials from SAFE Carolinas, as well an acappella performance of “Come Breathe with us Gaia” by the Sahara Peace Choir, and concluded with a march through downtown.