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For Immediate Release, September 2, 2009

Contact: Tierra Curry, Center for Biological Diversity, (928) 522-3681 

Activists Pressure Verizon Wireless to Hang Up on Bad Coal Connection

FLAGSTAFF, Ariz.— The Center for Biological Diversity is ramping up pressure on Verizon Wireless to withdraw its sponsorship of a coal-industry rally in West Virginia that is being held on Labor Day to promote mountaintop-removal coal mining and to oppose climate change legislation. In just two days, supporters from the Center and ally CREDO Action have sent more than 66,000 letters to Verizon asking the company to withdraw their sponsorship of the event. The Center anticipates that more than 100,000 letters will be submitted by concerned citizens by the end of the week.

As of this release, the Center for Biological Diversity had not received any response to its written request or phone calls for an explanation from Verizon Wireless for its sponsorship of the Labor Day pro-coal rally.

“Verizon Wireless is really bad at communication if they can’t hear the tens of thousands of activists who are demanding that they drop this call and withdraw sponsorship of an event denying the reality of climate change and celebrating the destruction of one of the most biodiverse areas on earth,” said Tierra Curry, biologist at the Center. 

The Center and allies plan to continue to pressure Verizon Wireless to withdraw their sponsorship of the event.

“Verizon Wireless made a bad connection by teaming up with Massey Energy, one of the worst polluters in America,” said Curry, “If they’re serious about ‘going green,’ they need to admit they made a mistake and hang up on this Big Coal party.”

Other local and national groups, including CREDO Action, Rainforest Action Network, and Grand Canyon Wildlands Council, are joining the call to Verizon Wireless to withdraw support for the rally.

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