Climate Week NYC 2018

Greenwashing Rockwool

Climate Action is undermining the integrity of #ClimateWeekNYC by featuring Rockwool as an opening day speaker and event host

Rockwool is a large-scale and rapidly expanding user of coal and other fossil fuels.

The company is using Climate Week NYC to greenwash their planned insulation megafactory next to an elementary school in West Virginia.

Misuse of Obama's Partnership for Sustainable Communities

Many Climate Week attendees fought for President Obama's Partnership For Sustainable Communities, which provides funding to plan compact, dynamic growth that doesn't rely on automobiles.

Sustainable communities have Smart Code: a type of zoning which allows people to live, work and play without using a car, because it requires the creation of complete neighborhoods using mixed use development.

NorthPort sustainable community

The EPA, HUD, and DoT provided Ranson, West Virginia with $1.5 million for plans that include turning an apple orchard into a mass-transit oriented development for 4,000 residences mixed with commerce and light industry.

Allowing partial industrial zoning on an agricultural property was just the opening Rockwool needed.

The company quietly negotiated a change to the mixed-use industrial zoning to instead allow a 463,000 square foot plant with 21 story smokestacks. Even more cynically, Rockwool restricted construction of residences across the rest of the Sustainable Communities property they didn't buy.

Coal, Petroleum Coke, and Fracked Natural Gas

To make their insulation, as defined in their permit, Rockwool’s process would primarily involve quarrying stone, trucking it in, melting it in 2,600 degree furnaces, then spinning the molten stone into fibers that are bound using toxic chemicals-- including the neurotoxin Formaldehyde.

Just because this incredibly energy and resource intensive product uses a minority percentage of recycled slag, does not make it sustainable.

Rockwool's permit for the new megafactory in West Virginia says it will rely completely on coal, petroleum coke, and fracked natural gas to power its 24/7 operation.

This single facility plans to emit 150,000 tons of carbon dioxide each year, in addition to astonishing amounts of particulate matter and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs).

All within two miles of four schools.

Climate Group's Cynical Response

For these reasons, we sent a letter to Climate Group on Sept 14, 2018.

Here's Climate Group's response, which flaks Rockwool's PR page.

Climate Group doesn't understand that there's a difference between "engaging a company" on climate change, and celebrating them as speakers and hosts. Rockwool's outrageous behavior in West Virginia is not a "local" issue any more than climate change is a local issue.

By letting Rockwool sponsor the cities panel this week, Climate Group is greenwashing Rockwool's coal-burning destruction of a planned sustainable community in West Virginia.

Tell Climate Group This is Not OK

Please ask Climate Group to explain why Rockwool's CEO is a featured speaker this week. How much funding does the Climate Group receive from Rockwool?

Attendees at Climate Week NYC 2018 deserve an event with integrity, and should not have to participate in an outrageous corporate greenwashing for Rockwool.

Also let the Danish government, who are attending Climate Week NYC, know that you don't approve of Rockwool's behavior in West Virginia.

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A project of the non-profit, non-partisan organization Jefferson County Vision, fighting for the quality of life in our West Virginia community.