Baltimore Teens Battle Toxic Garbage Incinerator

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Photo via Free Your Voice Facebook page
Photo via Free Your Voice Facebook page

Plans are underway to build the nation’s largest garbage incinerator in Curtis Bay, a neighborhood that already has plenty of problems–including one of the nation’s highest levels of toxic air pollution, even before the incinerator has been built. 

The incinerator has been touted by some–including former Governor Martin O’Malley–as an example of green energy. But the students at Benjamin Franklin High School, who have mobilized against the incinerator proposed for their neighborhood, argue that it’s anything but.

Curtis Bay already struggles with higher-than-average rates of diabetes, cancer, and other diseases. The incinerator would be permitted to emit 240 pounds of mercury and 1,000 pounds of lead every year. Supporters of the incinerator argue that it will bring jobs–but at what cost?

Their fight against the incinerator–carried out in partnership with local activist powerhouse United Workers — has been going on for three years. The New York Times featured their work this week in a video:

Find out more about the students’ work here.

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  1. Great example of teens educating the community and committing themselves to advocating for their neighborhood. Thanks, Rachel!

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