The Philadelphia Energy Solutions oil refinery (PES), located in South Philadelphia, has declared bankruptcy! They're hoping to get bailed out (have their debt erased) by the ruling of a judge in Delaware. But we know PES also owes an enormous debt to the people of Philadelphia who breathe the refinery's toxins and drink poisoned water. Philly Thrive knows from surveying over 300 Philadelphians that 33.9% of people who live on the fenceline of the refinery have suffered from asthma, which is drastically higher than the United States average of 7.7%. We know also that the PES refinery is responsible for over half of the city's emissions and is the largest polluter in Philadelphia.
We in Philly Thrive believe that people impacted by this pollution should be the ones to decide PES's fate, so we’re holding our own bankruptcy hearing. We’ll put PES on trial before a jury of those most impacted by their dirty business, here in our city.
Join us on on Tuesday, March 13th at 4pm, for the People’s Bankruptcy Court outside of City Hall (at Dilworth Park). We will hold a mock trial to determine whether or not PES is a viable, sustainable business to have in our community. (Hint: THEY'RE NOT!)
PES already has plans in place to dissolve, consolidate, and reorganize their massive debt of $525 million, through a combination of private loans and forgiveness of payments required to comply with the EPA's renewable fuel standard. Their fate is being decided in federal bankruptcy court in Delaware, outside of the city where PES is located and away from the Philadelphia residents who are impacted daily by the refinery’s deadly pollution. Residents from the fenceline of the refinery will testify to the negative impact the refinery has had on their health and safety, bringing evidence Philly Thrive has gathered through our #WeDecide Survey. Backed by that solid evidence, the people of Philadelphia will make a case for our Right to Breathe and our right to choose the fate of our neighborhoods.