Susan Sarandon weighs in on Wawayanda power plant

Actress Susan Sarandon has released a video urging people to call Gov. Andrew Cuomo and tell him to stop a $900 million natural-gas fired power plant that’s being built Wawayanda.

The Academy Award winning actress and environmental activist  has released a video saying that although Cuomo has put a ban hydraulic fracturing of natural gas, natural gas infrastructure is continuing to be built in New York.

Competitive Power Ventures is currently building 650-megawatt Valley Energy Center in Wawayanda.

“This plant is going to lock us into fracked gas dependency for the next 40 years,” Sarandon says.

Sarandon says that the power plant’s green house gas emissions will “ensure that Lower Manhattan is eventually going to be swallowed up by the ocean.”

In September a former CPV executive, Peter Galbraith Kelly Jr., was charged by federal prosecutors with providing a $90,000 low-show job to the wife of Joseph Percoco, a former top aide to Cuomo, in exchange for Percoco’s pledge of assistance on the project.

In exchange, Percoco was supposed to help secure a lucrative state deal for the plant, which never came to fruition, according to the federal complaint. Prosecutors say Percoco collected $287,000 from Kelly. Both men have pleaded not guilty.

CPV Vice President of External Affairs Thomas Rumsey has previously said that the charges do not call into question the power plant’s permitting process and that the plant is still scheduled to be operational by February 2018.

Sarandon in the video asks for Cuomo to halt construction on the power plant. She also asks viewers to join her and Pramilla Malick to call on state leaders to push for halting construction and any further permitting.

The video was posted by the Facebook page “Protect Orange County,” a group headed by Malick, , a Westtown Democratic activist who recently lost a race for state Senate against Republican Sen. John Bonacic. She ran on a platform of clean energy and against natural gas infrastructure.

Sarandon joins former Democratic Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich and academy nominated actor James Cromwell, who lives in Warwick, in prominent faces who are against the project.

You can find the video here.

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    Chris McKenna

    Chris McKenna covers Orange County government and politics for the Times Herald-Record. He has been a reporter at the newspaper since 1999. Read Full
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