I've Got a Story to Tell, You've Got a Story to Tell, We've Got a Story to Tell... Let's Tell our Story!
Calling ALL Philadelphians:
Come out to participate in this historic opportunity for residents to share our experiences, thoughts, & visions about the Philadelphia Energy Solutions oil refinery with City officials. Now is the time for every one of us to show up to reclaim our #RightToBreathe & a green economy that works for all. Haven't been directly impacted by the refinery? Come stand in solidarity with your neighbors who have been breathing this lawbreaking pollution that threatens all of our lives on this planet.
On June 21st, the PES refinery caught fire & exploded multiple times in what the Inquirer has called a "near catastrophe" for a million Philadelphians. Then on June 26th, PES announced plans to close the facility. In response to those events, Mayor Kenney has created a "PES Refinery Advisory Group" to discuss the future of the refinery & gather feedback from the public.
There are very few residents on the Advisory Group to tell the stories that MUST be heard about the refinery - so we have to show up in mass at these public meetings the City has organized to tell our stories. Stories of the public health crisis that results from having the largest oil refinery on the east coast in our neighborhoods. Stories from young people fearing for a future of climate catastrophe. Stories of the employment, energy security, & economic stimulus that could come from a transition to renewable energy.
The public meetings actually start at 5:30pm but all are welcome & encouraged to gather outside of the building at 5pm as Philly Thrive leads a short program to get grounded in our voices & strength before entering the meeting. A lot is at stake with the future of the refinery & often these meetings can feel disempowering, so we will gather to sing, pray, & give short speeches right before entering.
Below is the City's schedule of public meetings & you can find updates from the City at https://www.phila.gov/programs/refinery-advisory-group/. The City is recommending for anyone who wants to present at a meeting to register by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Message Philly Thrive if you would like support preparing & registering to speak. We are committed as an organization to supporting voices of those living near the refinery suffering direct impacts from PES's pollution who have been ignored previously by the City.
- Tues Aug 6, 5:30pm: Overview of the Refinery Advisory Group, including brief presentation about the refinery site & the structure of future Advisory Group meetings. Public comments that are limited to these topics will be welcomed at the end of the meeting.
- Tues, Aug 20, 5:30pm: Community Committee
- Tues Aug 27, 5:30pm: Environmental and Academic Committee