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Monday, February 28, 2022

Lydai Edwards 針對能源環保提波士頓家規法案

Lydia Edwards files legislation to promote environmental justice in Boston, empower city to halt certain projects including proposed electrical substation 


Home Rule Petition would give city authority to enforce environmental rights in Massachusetts constitution, remove exemptions for utility companies in zoning review


(Boston) Today, Lydia Edwards announced legislation in the Boston City Council to secure the environmental rights of Boston residents and ensure the city has adequate safeguards against impactful energy and industrial projects. Ms. Edwards’ council district and home neighborhood of East Boston are burdened by air pollution, a lack of tree canopy and open space, and climate impacts such as flooding and sea level rise–factors made worse by the irresponsible siting and expansion of certain energy and industrial facilities.


“Residents of the City of Boston have repeatedly been denied environmental rights which are fundamental to our state constitution,” said Lydia Edwards. “Where justice has been denied, we will legislate new protections and safeguards for residents against energy companies that have abused their power for too long.”


“We at GreenRoots have firsthand knowledge of how utility companies ignore communities and fast track processes,” said John Walkey of GreenRoots. “This necessary tool will center community and environmental justice.”


“ACE fully supports changing the way the city does business with utility companies,” said Dwaign Tyndal of Alternatives for Community and Environment. “The legislation allows us to create a just system that centers people, planet and a green future.”


“The East Boston community deserves to have their voices heard,” said Staci Rubin, Vice President, Environmental Justice at Conservation Law Foundation. “Officials have repeatedly ignored the fact that residents overwhelmingly oppose the Eversource project in their neighborhood. Senator Edwards is absolutely right to continue to push for environmental justice for East Boston.”

An Act to Secure Environmental Justice in the City of Boston, a home rule petition, would make three targeted changes to Boston’s Zoning Enabling Act. The legislation would:

  • Empower the Building Commissioner of the City of Boston to enforce state constitution and law by issuing a stop work order to projects that violate legally established environmental rights

  • Remove a current exemption for utility companies from complying with Boston’s zoning code in the future

  • Direct the Boston Zoning Commission to establish clear rules for zoning review of energy projects


In November 2021, more than 83% of voters in Boston’s municipal election opposed the proposed East Boston substation in a non-binding ballot question. Analyses from scientific and environmental organizations have shown clean energy alternatives could meet the energy needs of East Bostonians, reduce utility costs and mitigate environmental justice issues. Certain state approvals for the project are under appeal


Ms. Edwards is filing the home rule petition as a city councilor and will seek local passage prior to her conclusion of service on the council. Lydia Edwards was inaugurated into the Massachusetts Senate in January 2022.

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