The plastic industry has been trying to take advantage of the pandemic to maximize profits. But fueling fear during a public health crisis is outrageous and must be called out. To truly protect public health and the environment long-term, we need full-scale reuse systems.
At the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, staffing concerns caused many New England states with bottle return programs to temporarily stop enforcing collection requirements at grocery stores, supermarkets, and liquor shops. Connecticut was among the states pressing pause on bottle bill enforcement. But as of May 20, the state’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP) has reinstated bottle collection requirements at these retail sites.
With our country engulfed in anger over police brutality towards black Americans — and with COVID-19 infections still raging nationwide — President Donald Trump spent much of his time here in Maine last week continuing his assault on our public lands and waters.
As the nation grapples with the pandemics of racism and COVID-19, President Trump decimated protections for the Atlantic’s only marine national monument, the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts. That’s illegal — and CLF and our partners will fight this rollback.
“Once again, the president is making cynical use of the national crises he has inflamed to pander to the very few New Englanders who may still have faith in his leadership,” said Bradley Campbell, President of CLF. “Having ravaged our economy nationally, Trump is now dismantling the few protections now in place to avert the demise of New England’s traditional marine fisheries, culture, and economy. We call on the New England delegation and the public to fight this attack on our ocean and our future by all means available.”
“The president has no authority to do this. The president has the authority under the Antiquities Act to create National Monuments. The only body that has authority to change the boundaries, conditions, the terms that govern a national monument, is the Congress,” says Sean Mahoney, who directs the state of Maine chapter of the Conservation Law Foundation.
In another step to reduce environmental regulations, Trump allows commercial fishing in nation’s only marine monument in the Atlantic
“Once again, the president is making cynical use of the national crises he has inflamed to pander to the very few New Englanders who may still have faith in his leadership,” said Bradley Campbell, president of the Boston-based Conservation Law Foundation, which plans to file a lawsuit challenging Trump’s move. “We call on the New England delegation and the public to fight this attack on our ocean and our future by all means available.”
All of us at CLF are reeling from and sharing in the national outrage over the murders and persecution of black people perpetrated and condoned by the police and other state actors. Racial justice is at the heart of climate justice, and we fight for both.
“Preventing residents from commenting on a project that will have enormous impacts on their community is not only shameful but a form of discrimination,” said Amy Laura Cahn, Director of CLF’s Healthy Communities and Environmental Justice program. “East Boston and Chelsea already experience some of the worst air quality and pollution in the state and adding yet another industrial facility will only compound these injustices. State leaders need to be held accountable for silencing community concerns to push this project through.”
The complaint states that “Spanish-speaking residents were left with no way of understanding what was said during the two- and half-hour hearing, and no ability to understand and thus respond to or echo the testimony of others as an English-speaking resident might have done. When these residents were finally permitted to speak — following hours of English-only, complex, and technical testimony by parties, intervenors, and limited participants — they had no context or confidence to share their perspective, rendering the record essentially incomplete.”