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Greenpeace protestors will be in court on Tuesday
by Quinten Sunday, Feb. 13, 2005 at 8:03 AM

Six Greenpeace protestors, arrested for scaling smokestack in Greene County last June, will be in court this Tuesday. (adds details, background)

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The six Greenpeace activists who scaled the smokestack at a power plant in Greene County last year will be in court this Tuesday. All six protestors have decided not to contest the misdemeanor charges filed against them, after negotiating an agreement with the power company to drop all felony charges.

In June of last year, the six protestors climbed up the 700 foot smokestack at the Hatsfield Ferry Power Station in Masontown, Pennsylvania, about 50 miles south of Pittsburgh. They then unfurled a 2,500 square foot banner that read "THE BUSH ENERGY PLAN KILLS – CLEAN ENERGY NOW!"

When they climbed down from the smokestack, they were arrested and charged with an array of State and Federal felonies, as well as four state misdemeanors.

The felony charges included multiple counts of burglary, criminal trespass and riot at the state level. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, they also faced a possible 25 years in prison and a $100,000 fine for charges related to criminal conspiracy, damaging or attempting to damage the property of an energy facility and causing or attempting to cause a significant interruption or impairment of a function of an energy facility. The Department of Homeland Security was also allegedly pursuing an investigation of the sextet.

All of those felony charges have been dropped and only the misdemeanor charges remain.

According to Greenpeace, the Bush administration has systematically weakened clean air laws by allowing power stations to install new equipment without adding pollution controls, and permitting coal-fired power plants to continue to release tons of mercury into the air and waterways. In addition to its negative impacts on health, dirty energy wreaks havoc on the environment, causing global warming, acid rain, and smog.

The Hatfield's Ferry Power Station in Masontown was under investigation by the Justice Department for violating the Clean Air Act – an investigation that was dropped by the Bush administration.

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by p Sunday, Feb. 13, 2005 at 3:36 PM

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by p Sunday, Feb. 13, 2005 at 3:37 PM

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banner_and_smoke.jpg, image/jpeg, 500x332

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