And Baltimore is at the forefront of local leadership in the fight to prevent climate chaos. The City Council unanimously passed a Climate Resolution in June that outlines an ambitious climate action plan for the city and condemns President Trump's plans to leave the Paris Agreement.
The resolution includes a commitment to limit crude oil infrastructure that endangers Baltimore’s residents. Trains carrying crude oil have been known to travel through Baltimore City and have caused devastating derailments and explosions across North America. City Council members Mary Pat Clarke and Ed Reisinger recently introduced a bill that would ban the construction of new crude oil terminals, providing the city an easy opportunity to act locally on climate change and protect residents from dangerous explosions.
Upholding the city’s climate resolution by passing this crude oil terminal bill would have implications beyond Baltimore. While cities like Portland, Ore, have passed similar legislation, Baltimore would be the first city to do so on the East Coast.
As we reflect on our opportunity to act, it would be wise to remember that this bill is being introduced during criminal trials in Quebec regarding a crude oil train derailment that killed 47 people in 2013 — a prime example of why these bills are important to pass before there is a catastrophe here. I sincerely hope the City Council capitalizes on this opportunity to lead by example.