Eight Greenpeace activists were arrested without incident Tuesday evening after a stunt that had several of them dangling from a southwest side bridge.
At least three activists rappeled from the South Pulaski Street bridge spanning the Sanitary and Ship Canal just north of Interstate 55 and unfurled a banner the read "We Can Stop Coal" in both English and Spanish.
On Greenpeace's website, activists claimed to have prevented a coal barge from passing.
The protest was one of several aimed at bringing attention to the health and environmental effects of coal power.
Earlier in the day, the smokestack at Pilsen's Fisk Generating Station was targeted.
Eight activists climbed the smokestack, at 1111 W. Cermak Rd., and unfurled yellow banners with the words "Quit Coal" printed on them.
Ten hours after reaching the top, the climbers began painting the same words on the structure.
"Pollution from the Fisk and Crawford plants prematurely kills 42 people every year," one activist said in an online post. "That human cost is paid entirely by the communities who live in the shadows of these two aging plants. You won’t find it on Edison International’s bottom-line."
Indeed, a 2002 Harvard School of Public Policy study found that communities such as Pilsen and the Little Village, where the Crawford Generating Station is located, had increased mortality and asthma rates.
The activists said they plan to remain perched atop the Pilsen smokestack until the plant's owner meets with them. As of Tuesday evening, the climbers indicated they would be spending the night.
The activity coincided with a public hearing by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency that was held Tuesday in Chicago.
|Greenpeace activists atop the smokestack at the Fisk Generating Station in Pilsen.|
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