City Council approved ‘Climate Bill’ last year without controversial provision
This article by Anthony Hahn appeared in the Daily Camera, March 19th, 2018.
Lafayette’s City Council this week will discuss amending the Climate Bill of Rights and Protections — a piece of city code adopted last year that supporters say effectively bans oil and gas development — to read as it originally was meant to.
The amendment is being heralded by Councilwoman Merrily Mazza, a frequent voice of dissent toward any oil and gas regulatory efforts, and if approved, it would reinstate a clause legalizing civil disobedience and direct-action protest in the face of fracking.
The article was the most controversial piece of the bill when it was introduced last year, and the City Council voted to gut the language prior to approving it when Mazza was absent — though her presence would likely have not made a difference against the other six unanimous “yes” votes.
It’s the first step in the process of saying we’re gonna fight or roll over,” Mazza said. “The first step is to revamp the climate bill so we have a direct action clause in it.”To me,” she added, “there is a clear path.”
The call to bring back the Climate Bill in its original form also likely was inspired by a public forum with representatives of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund earlier this month, where the firm discussed how the bill could be used as a defense for a ban on fracking.
It drew hundreds of residents and invigorated local activists who consistently have called for enhanced resistance from city officials to shield the community from oil and gas development. MORE…