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Indybay Feature
Mon Aug 31 2020
Protest at Wood Pellet Plant near Ukiah
Clean Air and Fire Safety Concerns at Mendocino Wood Pellet Plant
On August 28, tribal members and local residents protested outside the Mendocino Forest Products (MFP) wood pellet plant in Calpella, near Ukiah, calling for suspension of the plant’s operations during the Covid pandemic, now compounded by recent fires and extremely poor air quality. Organizers say the protest is needed to bring attention to demands for public transparency on air pollution and fire safety issues presented by the plant’s operations to date and especially under present conditions.

Following a Prayer to the Seven Directions, demonstrators walked a short distance from the post office to MFP’s distribution center and wood pellet plant. They carried a white banner with a statement in black declaring, “shut down the pellet plant!” Other folks held signs with messages such as, “We Demand Clean Air,” “The Pellet Plant is a Fire Hazard," “Our Children Can’t Breath," and “The Air Quality District Has Betrayed The Public Trust.”

Recent Harvard studies have shown a strong correlation between high levels of particulate matter and toxic substances in the air, and dramatically higher rates of Covid infection. Those most affected are Native Americans, essential workers living in low income communities, the elderly and those with disabilities and breathing difficulties such as asthma and COPD (Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease).

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See Also: Coalition Calls for Shut Down of Calpella Wood Pellet Plant

Related Feature: Wood Pellet Plant in Mendocino County Threatens Public Health
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