“We must have a moratorium on new coal plants and phase out existing ones within the next 20 years.” said NASA climate scientist James Hansen at a June 23 rally in West Virginia protesting mountaintop removal for coal mining. “Coal from mountaintop removal provides only 7% of United States coal, less than the amount of coal that we export.” At the time he was arrested, Dr. Hansen was reading a Declaration of the protestors that begins: “When, in the course of their lives, people find that they are being abused by those in position of power, and their children and their children’s future are being damaged by those in power, it is the right of the people, and their sacred duty, to resist…”

See our June 23 post:  NASA climate scientist Jim Hansen arrested today for civil disobedience against WV coal mining

Dr. Hansen’s statement at a June 23 rally in West Virginia and the “June 23 Declaration” of the protestors that he was reading at the time of his arrest are posted with his comments on his Columbia University web site.

“Local pollution effects and regional environmental destruction should be enough to stop the practice of mountaintop removal,” Dr. Hansen says in comments on his Columbia University web site accompanying the West Virginia statements.  “The bigger picture, including climate change, makes it clear that mountaintop removal, providing only 7 percent of United States coal, makes no strategic sense whatever….There has to be some leadership from the top. We cannot continue to give President Obama a pass on this much longer. On the other hand, he needs broad support in order to do what is right….”