Commuters probably weren't expecting this on their way to work in the morning. But beginning July 12th, the Sierra Club took over all of the ad space inside Washington, D.C.'s Farragut North Station to share their message that air pollution from coal-fired power plants poses health risks.
80 metro cars have carried similar ads since April.
According to the Sierra Club, the group aims to raise attention to the dangers of coal-fired power plants, such as the GenOn Potomac River power plant in Alexandria, VA. The organization reports that these plants "emit air pollutants like smog and soot, which exacerbate asthma and other health problems. Washington metro area residents are demanding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) protect their health by enacting strong standards to reduce toxic air pollution."
In March, the American Lung Association (ALA) released a report stating, “Particle pollution from power plants is estimated to kill approximately 13,000 people a year.” Coal-fired power plants were targeted as one of the biggest culprits.
When the ALA released their State of the Air report in April, their representative said that they often see a backlash. Janice Nolen told The Huffington Post, "We get criticized for... making the public aware of the air pollution in their community. Sometimes the fact that there still is an air pollution problem is not a message that people want to hear." Some may have a similar reaction to the Sierra Club ads.
The EPA announced new rules on Thursday for coal-fired power plants, with new regulations set to go into effect in 2012.
Check out the Sierra Club's disturbing ads: