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environmental justice

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The Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Misses in Latest Ruling
by Veronica Eady

The most vulnerable and environmentally over-burdened communities across Massachusetts’ 351 cities and towns suffered a great loss last week. The Supreme Judicial Court had an opportunity to bring real teeth to the Commonwealth’s Environmental Justice Policy, a landmark policy that has a lot of heart and good intentions, but like most uncodified policies, lacks any…

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Gender Justice, Environmental Justice
by Sandy Levine

CLF is pleased to highlight the great work of our Vermont intern, Taylor L. Curtis, who is the lead and driving force behind a month-long symposium Sex, Gender, Expression and the First Amendment Project (SGE1) held at Vermont Law School from March 20–April 12 – exploring the intersection of free expression, sexuality, sexual orientation, and gender…

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BU Biolab Case Returns to Court
by Jenny Rushlow

CLF and affected community residents will be back in Court on April 11th arguing that the high-level biocontainment laboratory proposed by Boston University (BU) has no place in the densely populated urban environmental justice community of Roxbury/ South End. Please join us in standing up for this important cause by attending the hearing in Boston on…

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Could Backyard Chickens Be an Answer to Food Insecurity in Woonsocket?
by Max Greene

Two weeks ago, I wrote about bringing backyard chickens back to Rhode Island and paid special attention to the ongoing effort to repeal Woonsocket’s chicken ban. A few days later, the Washington Post ran a feature-length article on low-income Woonsocket residents’ struggles to feed their families. My last post focused on the ways that historical…

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Let’s Bring Backyard Chickens Back to Rhode Island
by Max Greene

All over Rhode Island, people want to keep backyard chickens. The trouble is that the law often doesn’t let them. Until 2010, Providence banned chicken-keeping entirely. That year, a coalition of residents worked together to overturn the ban. These efforts paid off – now, chickens peck away happily at sites ranging from Southside Community Land…

Press Releases
Springfield Biomass Power Plant Oppponent Launch State Court Challenge
by Ben Carmichael

Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), Arise for Social Justice, Toxics Action Center (TAC) and over a dozen individual residents today filed a new lawsuit in Hampden County Superior Court seeking to overturn a state permit that would allow the Palmer Renewable Energy (PRE) biomass power plant to emit harmful air pollution. The lawsuit takes aim at the September 11, 2012 “Final Decision” from Massachusetts Department of Environmental (DEP) Protection Commissioner Ken Kimmell upholding a DEP air permit for PRE’s wood-burning power plant project in Springfield. The organizations, together with a group of local residents, long have opposed the plant because it will add air pollution to a community with childhood asthma rates already double the state average. Through today’s action, they are seeking to reverse PRE’s air permit and hold DEP accountable for protecting against harmful air pollution that disproportionately affects the Springfield area.

Press Releases
Springfield Biomass Power Plant Opponents Decry Flawed Air Permit Decision
by Ben Carmichael

Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), Arise for Social Justice and Toxics Action Center (TAC) today issued the following statements regarding the September 11, 2012 “Final Decision” from Massachusetts Department of Environmental (DEP) Protection Commissioner Ken Kimmell in the groups’ appeal of a DEP air permit for the Palmer Renewable Energy (PRE) biomass power plant project in Springfield. The organizations, who, together with a group of 16 local residents, have long opposed the plant for adding air pollution to a community with childhood asthma rates already double the state average, decried the decision and vowed to hold DEP accountable.

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Review Process for BU Biolab Revs Up Again
by Jenny Rushlow

Many of you have been waiting for the next opportunity to voice your concern over the BU Biolab. Your time is coming – the state’s public comment process will begin soon, and the Patrick Administration needs to hear from you. The proponents of Boston University’s proposed National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories (NEIDL) – known as…

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Speak Up: Public Comment Period Opens for BU Bioterror Lab
by Jenny Rushlow

Boston University (BU) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) are preparing a mandatory revised risk assessment for BU’s National Emerging Infectious Disease Laboratories (NEIDL), which has received substantial federal funding through NIH. I described the specifics of this risk assessment in an earlier post. The draft of that risk assessment is currently ready for…

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CLF Applauds Springfield Zoning Board of Appeals Decision to Rescind Building Permits for Biomass-burning Plant in EJ Community
by Jenny Rushlow

Late on Wednesday night residents of Springfield celebrated an important victory in their longstanding fight against a biomass-burning plant that Palmer Renewable Energy (PRE) proposes to construct in their community. Acting on the petition of local residents Michaelann Bewsee and Toni and William Keefe, the Springfield Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) overturned the two building permits that were issued to PRE last November. Media coverage of the ZBA decision is available here and here.