of San Francisco
Shut down the Hunters Point Power Station!
The Bayview Hunters Point area of Southeast San Francisco
is a predominantly black area of San Francisco whose problems of low income,
high unemployment, poor city services, and police harassment are compounded
by the presence of large amounts of toxic and radioactive discarded chemicals,
sewage treatment plants, and polluting industry. The result is very high
rates of asthma, breast and cervical cancer, and other serious diseases.
The 75-year old Hunters Point Power Station is high on the list of pollution
sources, and environmental and neighborhood activists have tried for years
to shut it down.
They also described how every time the community defeated
an argument of why the plant was necessary, the power interests would
shift to another argument. The current argument is "reliability,"
although the plant was shut for months this year for repairs with no blackouts.
What was particularly inspiring about the action was the role of youth.
There seemed to be a real sense that this is a life and death issue, and
it was clear that organizers had made a real effort to engage youth. Several
speakers spoke of how South East San Francisco was crawling with police
and CHP, supposedly to prevent violence, yet the city was allowing residents
to die a slower death from pollution.
Youth march on May 16, 2001 at beginning of campaign to shut down the PGE Hunters Point Power Plant.