Southern Alliance for Clean Energy Honored to Address U.S. Commission on Civil Rights

Guest Blog | February 2, 2016 |


SACE staff to speak about impacts of coal on low-income, minority communities

Contact: Amelia Shenstone, SACE, 339-223-0536, [email protected]


Atlanta, Ga. – Amelia Shenstone, Campaigns Director at Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, will address the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights during a briefing on Environmental Justice this Friday, February 5, 2016 in Washington, DC.

Ms. Shenstone’s comments will focus on the negative impacts of coal-fired energy, particularly on low-income communities and communities of color. She will specifically highlight the ways new regulations must be improved to better protect all communities from the threat of coal ash, a toxic by-product that results from burning coal. The briefing will inform the Commission’s 2016 Enforcement Report, Environmental Justice: Toxic Materials, Poor Economies, and the Impact on the Environment of Low-Income, Minority Communities.

In advance of her upcoming presentation, Ms. Shenstone offered these comments:

“We know that all stages of coal-fired energy production – from mining to transport, from burning to toxic waste storage – have negative impacts on human and environmental health. But what many fail to realize is that the negative impacts are borne most heavily by low-income communities, communities of color, the elderly and children.

“Even as coal plants are being retired in our region, we are left with a legacy of toxic, leaking coal ash pits, which are disproportionately located near communities of color and low-income communities.

“I remain hopeful that by addressing the Commission on Civil Rights and shining a spotlight on these inequities, we may help to secure better protection for our most vulnerable citizens and reduce our dependence on coal for making electricity.”




About Southern Alliance for Clean Energy

Founded in 1985, the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy is a nonprofit organization that promotes responsible energy choices that work to address the impacts of global climate change and ensure clean, safe, and healthy communities throughout the Southeast. Learn more at