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Climate Activists Re-Arrested For Bail Violations Related To Recent Coal Protests

Annie Ropeik

Climate activists are facing new charges after appearing in district court in Concord Friday.

They’ve held a series of protests against a coal power plant in Bow that’s the largest left in New England.

Dozens of activists crowded outside the Concord courtroom Friday. Many wore red – not just for Valentine's Day, but to show solidarity, they said.

Lila Korman-Glazer, director of 350 New Hampshire Action, says the protesters have pleaded not guilty to trespassing at Merrimack Station last September. She says they had a moral imperative to demonstrate.

"For every hour that the coal plant in Bow burns, people will suffer and die in the climate crisis,” she says. “And we’re just not seeing the type of action that is required to stop the climate crisis coming from any level of our government. So we've decided to take action into our own hands, which in this case meant risking arrest."

One person accepted a plea deal during Friday's hearing. 

Korman-Glazer argues that the Concord city prosecutor and Bow Police then sided with the fossil fuel industry Friday by re-arresting and re-charging 17 of the protesters for bail violations.

The new charges relate to protests in December, where activists were arrested trying to block a coal train on its way to Bow.

Cody Pajic with the No Coal No Gas campaign is one of the protesters who was arrested then and re-arrested Friday.

"However the state chooses to respond to that is their choice and we'll face the consequences,” he says, “but I'm not going to let the state scare me into not doing something that I know is right.”

The city prosecutor referred a request for comment to the Bow Police Department, which sent a statement. 

"Those arrested on scene at the Bow protest were released on bail conditions requiring good behavior and to not commit a federal, state, or local crime," the statement says. "Several of the individuals who were arrested in September have been involved in recent protests where they were arrested or committed a federal, state, or local crime." 

The department says the re-arrested protesters were released on bail after turning themselves in and will be back in court in Concord next month.

Annie has covered the environment, energy, climate change and the Seacoast region for NHPR since 2017. She leads the newsroom's climate reporting project, By Degrees.
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