• Kids push for pollution danger labels on gas pumps

    By: Nick McGurk


    SEATTLE - A group of kids is pushing for warning labels on gas pumps across Seattle and taking guidance from the group that successfully lobbied for similar labels in Berkeley, California.

    The labels would go on gas pump handles, according to kids with the group Plant-for-the-Planet. That group met with Seattle City Council members on Thursday.

    "There's the warning labels on cigarette boxes that says, smoking these will kill you and I think it's important that we do the same thing on gas labels,” said Athena Fain, an activist.

    The warnings would say that car exhaust causes pollution--which leads to climate change.

    "I want people to start driving less, because the more you drive, the more C02 you put into the atmosphere,” said Fain.

    Aji Piper, a fellow student activist, wants the messages to include alternatives to driving. He believes the labels could change driving habits.

    "We want it to be like, something where people see this and they're like, oh my -- I didn't realize this!" said Piper.

    A group called 350 Bay Area helped push for an ordinance in Berkeley that would mandate every gas pump handle in the city be labeled with a warning message.

    That group is advising the students and recently met with them over Skype.

    Seattle City Council member Tom Rasmussen says what he heard from kids Thursday sounds promising, but wouldn't be easy to implement.

    "I would imagine that we would get a lot of opposition from the oil companies, probably would have to go to court,” said Rasmussen.

    The city of Berkeley acknowledges it could be sued by oil companies over its actions.

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