Two Environmental Activists Jailed
Palm Beach County, FL- After being found guilty of misdemeanor trespassing, blocking traffic in an act of civil disobedience during the February 2008 protest against Florida Power Light’s West County Energy Center, Lynne Purvis and Panagioti Tsolkas are sentenced to 30 and 60 days in jail.
During their court case, Purvis and Tsolkas argued that the environmental damages caused by FPL’s power plant necessitated non- violent civil disobedience. Scientists Dr. John van Leer and Dr. Sydney Bachus testified in defense of Purvis and Tsolkas, arguing that the completion of the FPL West County Energy Center could lead to higher levels of Mercury in the Loxahatchee Preserve area and aquifer contamination; in addition to the acceleration of global warming. The State Attorney’s Office contested the environmentalists’ claims, arguing that proposed power plant impact on global warming was not an imminent threat.
Once open, the Florida Power and Light West County Energy Center will be the largest fossil fuel burning power plan in the United States, emitting twelve million tons of potentially toxic carbon emissions and dispensing 13.5 million gallons of contaminated water into Florida’s aquifer every year. In addition to jail, Judge Johnson sentence restrains Purvis and Tsolkas from coming within 500 feet of FPL property. Both remain committed to protecting Palm Beach County’s natural resources. Co-defendant Russell McSpadden responded to the Judge’s sentence stating, “The FPL West County Energy Center poses an imminent and severe threat to our quality of life in Palm Beach County. We are disappointed with the Judge’s decision to jail environmental activists who took action to stop FPL from contaminating the air and water of Palm Beach County. We believe during this time of global climate change that average citizens must step up and take action to address the impacts large corporations are having on our environment. “
For More Information:
Palm Beach County Environmental Coalition
Below are the addresses for the two activists given jail time for the FPL protest. If you have a minute, please write some words of support to them…For those living in St. Augustine- we have stamps & envelopes at the shop, so feel free to just drop letters off at LScrews & I’ll mail them for you when I pass the post office every other day. Or you can just email a letter to me in reply to this email & I’ll print & mail it.
Thanks so much in advance for showing your support for Panagioti (Peter) & Lynne!
* don’t forget the envelope must have a physical mailing address on it- no p.o. boxes -and if you want them to be able to write you back, you need to put your address on the letter too (in case they don’t receive the envelope) *
please visit www.evergladesearthfirst.org for more information about the cause for which these people are serving time…
Lynne J. Purvis
P.O. Box 24716
WPB, FL 33416
P.O. Box 24716
WPB, FL 33416