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At City and State Levels, Proposed Legislation Would Protect Wetlands

posted Feb 1, 2019, 5:11 PM by Deb Beatty Mel
On January 28, Boston City Councilor At-Large Michelle Wu and District City Councilor Matt O’Malley refiled an ordinance aimed at strengthening the City’s ability to fight climate change and reasonably regulate development. The Local Wetlands Protection Ordinance would empower the Boston Conservation Commission to require green infrastructure with new development, including protections for urban wetlands, which are an important natural resource to manage flooding and reduce urban heat island effect. The Roslindale Wetlands Task Force is one of a coalition of groups supporting the ordinance. Read more about the ordinance

At the same time, the Roslindale Wetlands Task Force also worked with Rep. Nika Elugardo to file a bill (H.3642) that would amend state environmental law to allow local conservation commissions to study the effects of climate change and environmental justice if they so wish. Conservation commissions are the stewards of natural resources, and this enabling language opens the door for local communities to act. Conservation commissions would be empowered to "include in its conservation plan an analysis of climate change effects and also may evaluate environmental justice and climate justice elements of climate change, including effects of extreme weather and flooding within areas subject to protection. A conservation commission may adopt guidelines and policies for environmental justice and climate change."

We will keep the community informed as these legislative initiatives move forward.