Just think about all that the world has learned about climate change during the last few years. Think about the 195 nations that signed the Paris Agreement to limit carbon and invest in alternative energy.

And think about the South Portland City Council and its decision to empower volunteer experts to draft an ordinance for our zoning laws that would protect the city from the impacts of exporting crude oil from South Portland.

The Clear Skies ordinance was adopted in 2014 and has since been challenged in court by Portland Pipe Line lawyers. But once again, the South Portland council has risen to defend this city’s well-being, by asking the court to dismiss the lawsuit based on the fact that the company “had ‘no current plans’ to reverse the flow of the pipeline” (Portland Press Herald, Jan. 22).

Now, remember the specter of two 70-foot smokestacks spewing carbon exhaust during the burn-off of chemicals used in the extraction and transportation of tar sands crude oil, through 73-year-old pipes, from Canada to South Portland, via Vermont and New Hampshire.

Think of that happening at Bug Light Park, day in and day out. What would we tell the kids?

Knowing all that we know now about the speed and intensity of the planetary changes that we will hand off to our children and grandchildren, I thank the citizens of South Portland and their elected leaders for their foresight and steady resolve.

Karen Sanford

South Portland


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