1. Phil Tagami and his company CCIG, have filed suit in federal court against the city of Oakland, to overturn the ban the city passed last year on the storage and handling of coal in the city.
2.The city council voted unanimously last year to ban coal, after extensive testimony from health, science, labor, environmental justice, and youth groups. The city took this stand because of the health and safety impacts of coal on city residents, especially in areas already suffering disproportionately from pollution. The overwhelming majority of Oakland residents polled agreed that they opposed construction of a coal terminal in the city. The cities legal advisors found that the city had a legal right to ban coal on health and safety grounds.
3.The proposed terminal is massive: mile long coal-trains would arrive in Oakland daily. This would result in:
-risk of toxic spills and explosions
-the likelihood of dust and runoff contaminating already overly-impacted communities in West Oakland and workers at the port.
-huge climate impacts, including a dectable rise in global temperatures as a result of this coal in particular.
4. The city ruled to protect its residents, but now, Tagami and CCIG are attempting to overrule democracy for short term profit. This lawsuit is in federal court and could go all the way to the Supreme Court. There, given the national political climate, it could set a dangerous legal precedent that no local jurisdiction has the right to make any rules protecting their residents from toxins. This is a local battle with national and global implications.
5. Phil Tagami has in the past spoken out about the dangers of climate change for his children. He and his wife say they are progressive. Mr. Tagami owns a yoga studio, Ume Yoga, in downtown Oakland and is a practicing yogi. We are calling on him to take a stand of moral leadership, and stand for his kids, future, and all living things by dropping the lawsuit and finding another use for the terminal
6. Phil Tagami seems to take pride in Oakland and has been a prominent member of this community. He has contributed frequently to many charitable efforts and is a leader within the community. He is a business associate and friend of Gov. Jerry Brown. We are asking him to be a true leader and lover of our community and drop his suit that would over ride democracy and force our city to waste millions in legal defense that could be better spent on other things.