How Protect South Portland protects us all

To the editor,

I marvel at the grit and resilience of our neighbors in South Portland. This small city has become a leader in responding to the challenges of climate change. It was they, led by Protect South Portland, who blocked the Enbridge Pipeline Company’s plan to reverse their oil pipeline and bring dirty Canadian tar sands to town. This act closed the best East Coast outlet for tar sands export, a huge victory for everyone’s climate.

Now, once again, Protect South Portland is defending its community from fossil fuel trouble, this time from the harmful effects of vapor leaks from the 110 fuel tanks in their community.

From the Veterans Bridge we can smell the emissions wafting from the Sprague tanks. Not all harmful emissions smell, but they are always in the South Portland air. Technology exists for tank farms to monitor and to profitably harvest these valuable vapors with rapid payback for their investments. The companies have refused to act, even though tanks are in neighborhoods and near schools. Protect South Portland will support a bill of remedies to be submitted by Rep. Millette and Sen. Carney. They will need our support. Protect South Portland is also engaged in talks with the Maine DEP and the USEPA.

Protect South Portland is now asking folks to join in coalition with them to fight for the right to clean, safe air. I believe we owe the group a huge debt of gratitude. Let’s step up for South Portland and not let her be a sacrifice zone any longer.

To get involved or learn more, visit or email [email protected]

Charles Spanger