Sometimes it takes a long time for things to happen quickly — in this case, good things. Portland City Council is finally poised to approve unprecedented zoning restrictions on new fossil fuel infrastructure (FFI) for export or storage, before year’s end. This process began in 2015, culminating last November with a pair of unprecedented binding policy resolutions, opposing both crude by rail and new FFI. Over the past year, the Bureau of Planning & Sustainability, the Planning & Sustainability Commission, and now the Council itself have worked to craft zoning ordinances to implement the resolutions.
At this writing, the likely results (scheduled for a final vote in early December) look pretty good — in no small part because of energetic leadership from a grassroots movement and broad environmental coalition. Stay tuned!
— Ted Gleichman, Policy Advisor, Beyond Gas & Oil Team