Shelby County, Tennessee, will not sell two vacant properties to the Byhalia Connection oil pipeline, commissioners voted Monday evening. The vote is a win for the opponents of the pipeline, which as proposed would be built through predominantly Black communities in South Memphis.
“I have yet to hear a truly compelling reason why we need this (pipeline),” said County Commissioner Michael Whaley, who co-sponsored a separate resolution calling for federal reexamination of the pipeline’s permits. “Climate friendly infrastructure also drives the economy, drives creating jobs, but not at the expense of quality of life, the people impacted by this.”
Opposition to the pipeline has received nationwide support, including from celebrities voicing their opposition on social media and former Vice President Al Gore, who spoke at a protest earlier this month. “Our community faces the most significant environmental injustice and environmental racism case in our country,” said Justin Pearson, founder of Memphis Community Against the Pipeline. “The support that is building locally and nationally is proof of that.”
Article courtesy of Nexus Media, a nonprofit climate change news service.
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