Energy Work: Frontline Communities

When we burn coal and oil we are have a devastating impact at the global and the local level. Fossil fuels are the number one drivers of climate change and those impacted most of all are the communities situated closest to the mines and powerplants that drive the fossil fuel industry.


RAN is proud to stand and work with frontline communities who are directly challenging corporate pollution in their local neighborhoods. From Appalachian coal-field residents who are fighting for the future of their generational lands, to North Carolina’s small business owners and students who are demanding the right to clean air and water; from communities in Wyoming who are fighting state and private mining to prevent further development of coal tracts in their state, to Utah moms, grandmothers, Unitarians, queer rights activists, students and doctors who are trying to evict their local coal plant that’s polluting their air—each fight is unique, but ultimately the goal is the same: to transition communities away from coal.

Tar Sands

Across the United States, oil refineries are seeking permits to expand their facilities to process heavy crude oil from the tar sands. In Canada, the toxic burden on communities near the tar sands is already enormous. In addition to direct human exposure, oil contamination in the local watershed has led to arsenic in moose meat—a dietary staple for First Nations peoples—up to 33 times acceptable levels. Drinking water has also been contaminated.

RAN is proud to work with frontline communities to stop the madness of putting profit before people.

Here is a list of some of RAN’s Energy Program work with frontline communities over the past two years.

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Rainforest Action Network believes that corporate exploitation of coal and oil is a crime that demands bold and strident resistance.
We do not need coal, a 19th century technology, to power our 21st century world. Coal-fired power plants are the biggest source of man-made CO2 emissions. This makes closing coal plants job Number 1 to save the climate.