Maryland leads against climate change and dirty water
June 5, 2017
Our national news is full of bad news for the environment, but we don't need the Paris Climate Accords to fight climate change. Here's some good news on our local campaigns across the state fighting for clean air, clean water, and health:
- Maryland acts on climate with offshore wind and onshore jobs. Many of you signed comments, wrote letters, and even spoke out at hearings to encourage the MD Public Service Commission to think big on offshore wind and make Maryland a national leader by approving offshore wind renewable energy credits to companies vying for space on Maryland's coast. And, less than a week after the Baltimore City Council stood with us to demand the infusion of jobs that offshore wind will bring, the PSC followed your lead and declared that both wind projects will move forward. And now that both developers have accepted the PSC's conditions, Maryland is a huge step closer to fighting climate change and bringing thousands of good, green jobs to Baltimore and the Eastern Shore!
- Attorney General Frosh asks for protections from explosive oil trains. We've been working to protect communities in Baltimore City and across Maryland from the dangers of crude oil shipments by rail for years - and this problem only exists because existing federal regulations aren't adequate to deal with these volatile shipments. In May, Maryland's Attorney General joined with his colleagues from six other states to demand stricter limits on the vapor pressure of crude oil train shipments, which would make explosions less likely and less dangerous. Read more here - and we'll let you know when the public can weigh in on this important issue.
- Zero waste, zero incinerators. Maryland's municipal trash incinerators are major polluters of carbon dioxide, nitrogen oxide, mercury, lead, and other toxins - and waste resources that could create local, sustainable jobs. Baltimore City investigated zero waste practices at a public hearing last month, learning from experts with the Global Alliance for Incinerator Alternatives about how shutting down BRESCO could be better for the city. Read more in the Baltimore Brew and watch the Real News Network report to learn more about this exciting vision of waste as resources.
- Baltimore demands development without displacement. On May 13, we joined with our allies at United Workers and the Baltimore Housing Roundtable to demand that the city invest municipal bond funding in permanently-affordable housing and community-controlled green spaces. At the rally, Mayor Pugh and many members of the City Council pledged their support for this exciting vision for equitable, safe, and healthy communities. Read more about the rally here.
- Howard County fights for democracy. The Howard County Council will vote TONIGHT on the Citizens' Election Fund - public financing that enables candidates to run on small donations, not money from PACs and deep pocketed interests. Howard County residents: there is still time to call your councilmember!
- Protecting drinking water in Frederick County. We spent the third weekend of the month in beautiful Baker Park in downtown Frederick at the first annual Green Neighbor Festival, sharing information about the County's watersheds and poor water quality - with some of the most polluted streams in the state. Want to help change that? On Saturday, June 24, we'll be joining residents of the Linganore Creek watershed for Frederick County's fourth Watershed Workshop to talk about challenges facing that creek, which supplies nearly half of Frederick City's drinking water. Find out more and RSVP here!