Experts to Discuss Coal Train Issue

EUGENE, Ore. — The city council is also using a work session Monday evening as a way to gather more information on the coal train issue.

It’s a complex issue and at the same highly debated. Councilors ultimately must decide if they want to adopt a resolution prohibiting coal transport through Eugene.

At the council’s work session, four experts will make presentations. That panel consists of the mayor of Reedsport, a member of Climate Solutions, a member of Physicians for Social Responsibility, and the executive director for the Port of Coos Bay.

Councilors are taking what they call a triple bottom line approach.

This meeting is open to the public, but there will be no public comment.

“We try to look at the broad impacts of issues because often times there are true economic impacts but there might also be environmental or social equity,” said Keli Osborn, City of Eugene Division Manager.

Some argue coal dust affects public health, while others argue the economic benefits for the Coast are huge.

A final vote is expected on October 22, and that’s only an advisory note that will be combined with other communities and used as an example of how each feels about the issue. If passed, it doesn’t necessarily mean coal trains would be banned.

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