For The Generations has been working with our principle, the Delaware Riverkeeper Network, as well as Environmental Advocates of New York to support constitutional level protection for environmental rights in New York’s constitution.
While for years there have been provisions discussing various environmental issues in Article XIV, the provisions do not have the high level strength needed to recognize the inherent and indefeasible rights of people to a healthy environment and to provide those rights the same level of protection given to the right to free speech, to freedom of religion and other fundamental rights the people of New York hold dear.
But in 2017, Steve Englebright of the New York assembly has proposed this high level of protection with bill A2064. A parallel provision has been proposed in the NY Senate by Senator David Carlucci.
There are currently 44 sponsors on the Assembly version of the bill including: Gottfried, Santabarbara, Ortiz, Dinowitz, Colton, Lifton, Glick, Fahy, Abinanti, Otis, Jean-Pierre, Lavine, Mosley, Simon, Galef, Jaffee, Cook, Rivera, D’Urso, Hunter, Steck, Peoples-Stokes, Williams, Bichotte, Ramos, Weprin, Titus, Hyndman, Seawright, Lupardo, Rosenthal L, Barron, Walker, Carroll, Barrett, De La Rosa, Cahill, Thiele, Reyes, Gunther, Davila, Epstein, Aubry, Cruz.
The parallel Senate version, S2072 has 21 sponsors: Carlucci, Addabbo, Bailey, Biaggi, Breslin, Brooks, Gounardes, Harckman, Hoylman, Kaminsky, Kaplan, Krueger, Mayer, Metzger, Myrie, Sanders, Savino, Sepulveda, Serrano, Skoufis, Staviskly.
As of April 30, 2019 the New York legislators, in both the state Assembly and Senate, voted for first passage of a proposed amendment to the NY State Constitution that would recognize and protect the inalienable right to clean water, clean air and a healthful environment. The vote count was overwhelmingly in support of passage with senators voting for passage 45 to 17 and the Assembly members voting 110-34. The bill must pass both houses a second time when the next New York Legislature is seated in 2021. If passed, the proposed amendment would be placed on the New York state ballot for the people to vote upon.
Write your letter today to urge full support for these environmental rights to be added to the New York constitution.
If you are an organization or business who wants to sign on in support of New York’s Green Amendment, consider signing on to our organization sign on letter.
- How Environmental Law Can Protect People, Not Polluters — Interview on Midday WNYC
- Increasing Environmental Protections in New York — Interview with Capital Tonight
- Press Release – First Passage of New York Green Amendment (2019-05-01)
- Legislature Sign on Letter (2019-04-09)
- Green Amendment Press Release with EANY (2019-04-09)
- Legislative Discussion of NY Assembly regarding Green Amendment proposal (2018-04-24)
- Response to Business Council Opposition — 4/23/18 Delaware Riverkeeper Network Response and Bus Council Memo
- Assembly Hearing, April 24, 2017
- New York’s Green Amendment Proposal
- An Open Letter to the New York State Legislature