SEPTA, go sustainable

As a steering committee member with 350 Philadelphia, a climate-change group that opposes the building of a natural gas plant in Nicetown, I would like to clarify several points made in Monday's article "Power struggle."

Natural gas is not "clean-burning." It releases about half the carbon dioxide of coal, which is considered by many to be the dirtiest fuel. Nicetown residents are right to be concerned about their health. Burning natural gas releases nitrogen oxides - precursors to smog - and has been linked in some preliminary studies to worsening lung diseases such as asthma.

Sustainable public transportation is far from novel. The public transit system in Santiago, Chile, will be going 60 percent renewable by 2018, while trains in the Netherlands will be totally renewable. The public transportation system serving the San Francisco Bay Area gets more than half its energy from renewable sources.

350 Philadelphia hopes SEPTA will get on board with clean, renewable energy.

|Laura Cofsky, Philadelphia