SEATTLE - The Sierra Club organized a small rally on Seattle's waterfront Saturday to highlight concerns local business leaders have about plans for new coal trains along Puget Sound.
Trains already carry coal from the Rocky Mountains through Washington state for export through British Columbia, but proposals for five more ports would ship as much as 140 millions of tons of coal a year from Montana and Wyoming.
The tracks through Seattle run between the waterfront and Pike Place Market, and the business owners say the increased train traffic would increase traffic congestion and make it harder to get to the waterfront.
Among those attending the rally were Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn, State Rep. Reuven Carlyle, Pier 57 and Great Wheel owner Kyle Griffith, and Cary Moon, co-founder of People's Waterfront Coalition.
McGinn said Seattle should be exporting its green building technology - not coal - to China.
"This is the city of the future. There's a way for us to grow jobs that supports our core values. Coal is not the answer," he said.
McGinn previously joined other city and tribal leaders in forming a coalition to oppose the coal trains.