Help make the National Community Rights Network annual retreat happen!
September 5th, 2015
NCRN is holding their annual in-person board of directors meeting in Granby, Colorado this October 23-25, 2015. They need your help to make it happen. Learn more here – check it out!
Meigs County Home Rule Committee:
by Dennis J. SargentMeigs County Home Rule Committee
August 19th, 2015
Grounding their right to local self-government in the Ohio Constitution, Meigs County residents assert their right to create a community rights county charter to protect their health, safety, and welfare, from fracking related activities.
August Update: Chomsky, Hedges, Unions Endorse Worker Bill of Rights
August 12th, 2015
Learn the latest news on Spokane, WA's, Worker Bill of Rights, read Community Rights Paper #5 on Citizens United, and join us for the launching of the Ohio Community Rights Workshop.
The Rights of Nature & Self-Governance – San Andres Archipelago, Colombia
July 20th, 2015
The Raizal people of the Archipelago of San Andrés, Providencia, and Santa Catalina off the coast of Colombia, work with CELDF to recognize the Rights of Nature and to achieve their right to self-determination. CELDF travels to the Archipelago this month. Learn more here.
On Community Civil Disobedience in the Name of Sustainability: The Community Rights Movement in the United States
June 24th, 2015
Our existing system of law is aimed at constant development and extraction, and we are on the verge of a planetary crisis. It’s time to change our activism. This month, PM Press published CELDF’s White Paper on how we are changing our activism and building a new people’s movement aimed at fundamental, systemic change.
Common Sense: A Community Rights Organizing “Primer” from CELDF
June 24th, 2015
Trying to protect your community from any number of threats? Check out Common Sense, CELDF's community rights organizing primer.
The New York Times: Stop Revering Magna Carta
by Tom GinsburgThe New York Times
June 14th, 2015
Some folks are celebrating 800 years of Magna Charta as if it were a sacred document. Others...not so much. Why? Read more in this New York Times opinion piece.
Ohio Community Rights Network: Join with OHCRN to grow the Community Rights Movement today!
June 13th, 2015
A video on the work of OHCRN in growing Community Rights to help protect all Ohioans from harmful activities threatening clean air, pure water, and the right to democratic, local self-governance.
Geddry: Wall dares invoke the constitution
by MagixGeddry
June 8th, 2015
Recognizing sustainability is illegal under our current structure of law, blogger Magix of Coos County urges the Community Bill of Rights to challenge the law and protect their County from an LNG export terminal.
Friends of the Earth Northern Ireland - Building a Movement for Rights
Friends of the Earth Northern Ireland
June 5th, 2015
CELDF's Mari Margil shares about the growth of the Community Rights Movement with our allies in Ireland - a movement to challenge and change our structure of law and governance such that the rights of communities and nature are elevated above corporate claimed "rights" to frack, mine, privatize water, etc. See page 2.
Dissident Voice: The Future is in the Past: Economics 101 for Spokane
by Paul KirkDissident Voice
May 12th, 2015
An in-depth look at Spokane, WA, its economy, and what sustainable and just would mean to the almost 40,000 people living in poverty. This includes Envision Spokane's Worker Bill of Rights, aimed for the November 2015 ballot.
We the People, We Decide - Columbia County Sustainable Action for Green Community (CCSAGE)
Check out CCSAGE's video: Columbia County, OR, residents partner with CELDF to advance Community Rights to stop fossil fuel transportation threatening their communities.
PACRN Statement: Conestoga Township, PA, Resident Unjustly Arrested for Speaking Truth at a Public Meeting
May 1st, 2015
The Pennsylvania Community Rights Network stands by Conestoga Township, PA, resident Kim Kann, who was arrested for speaking truth at a public meeting this week. Kann and other residents are tirelessly pursuing community rights to protect themselves from LNG pipelines, despite local government officials' hostility.
Truthout: The Carcinogenic Murder of Audrey Moore
by Evaggelos VallianatosTruthout
April 27th, 2015
Author Evaggelos Vallianatos pays tribute to Audrey Moore of Josephine County, OR - a community rights advocate who recently died from cancer caused by the poisons she was unwavering in trying to stop. Audrey's work lives on in those around her, who are steadfast in advancing the right of all living things to be free from chemical trespass.
Tribute to Audrey Moore
April 20th, 2015
It’s with a heavy heart that we are sharing the news of the recent passing of Audrey Moore. Over the last two years Audrey has been a truly formidable force and trailblazer for community rights in Oregon.
Truthout: Colorado Communities Battle Energy Industry to Build Community Rights
by Cliff WilmengTruthout
April 18th, 2015
As the oil and gas industry bears down on local Colorado municipal representatives to open their communities to fracking, those who refuse to cave are part of building a community rights movement that is rebuilding our structure of law and governance.
In These Times: Sacrificing at the Altar of Energy
by Charles JohnsonIn These Times
April 16th, 2015
What are we willing to sacrifice at the altar of energy? Author and naturalist Charles Johnson beseeches us to look beyond science, beyond climatism, and beyond legal precepts about property - to look at love, humanity, and our connection with the land as we live in a time of ecological crisis.
Griffith Journal of Law and Human Dignity: Finally Being Heard: the Great Barrier Reef and the International Rights of Nature Tribunal
April 13th, 2015
Just over a year ago, the International Tribunal for the Rights of Nature and Mother Earth sat for the first time in Quito, Ecuador. Here, Michelle Maoney of the Australian Earth Laws Alliance shares the powerful, alternative narrative that emerged from the Tribunal, whereby Rights of Nature are recognized, codified, and enforced.
OHCRN Statement: Broadview Heights, OH, County Court Decision Evokes Rallying Cry from Residents
March 15th, 2015
While a County Court elevates corporate claimed "rights" over community rights in Broadview Heights, OH, residents assert the decision is illegitimate, and determine to continue on.
New CELDF Website Resources - Check it Out!
February 19th, 2015
Take a look at some of our educational materials available on our site - from new video, to statements on recent state Supreme Court decisions, to our Community Rights Papers - it's all right here!
OHCRN Statement: Rejecting the Munroe Falls Decision
February 18th, 2015
The Ohio Community Rights Network, partnering with communities across the state to assert and protect their right to local self-governance, rejects the Ohio Supreme Court's protection of the oil and gas industry and the further stripping of residents' home rule authority.
CELDF Statement: Spokane Initiative Decision
February 4th, 2015
In the face of corporations and government joining together to suppress the democratic rights of the people of Spokane, WA, to vote on a Community Bill of Rights, last week the Washington Court of Appeals overturned an earlier ruling and ordered the initiative be placed back on the ballot for a vote of the people.
MGX: Sustainable vs renewable and why ecosystems have rights
by MagixMGX
February 1st, 2015
Blogger Magix of Coos County, OR, reviews a recent, standing room only meeting regarding their Community Bill of Rights initiative that would protect the community from LNG pipelines projects. The meeting included distinguishing between "renewable" and "sustainable" - the latter being locally-based and community controlled.
Volatility: We Need GMO Abolition, Not Labeling
by RussVolatility
December 22nd, 2014
Blogger Russ reviews why labeling GMOs misses the point: People have a right to abolish GMOs - not just know whether or not their food contains them. He urges grassroots, Community Rights Movement building to achieve that end.
Written Word, Spoken Word: Team Mora Kicks Judge Browning's Bootie (In His Own Goddamned Courtroom)
by Frances MadesonWritten Word, Spoken Word
December 10th, 2014
Blogger Frances Madeson reveals Judge Browning's pained granting of intervenor status to the Mora Land Grant and Jacobo Pacheco in the SWEPI lawsuit seeking to overturn Mora's Community Bill of Rights banning all hydrocarbon extraction.
Written Word, Spoken Word: 14,392 Reasons for Mora County to Stand Its Ground On the Anti-Fracking Ordinance
by Frances MadesonWritten Word, Spoken Word
November 29th, 2014
Blogger Frances Madeson reveals the number of gas leases in Mora County, making their Community Bill of Rights banning fracking all the more urgent. Make no mistake, this is war
November 19th, 2014
Blogger Magix reviews corporate onslaughts to advance their destruction - in this case, in Coos County, OR - and how communities are asserting their inalienable rights to protect themselves through enacting rights-based law.
Written Word, Spoken Word: SWEPI v. Mora County: The Purple Haze of U.S. Judge James Oren Browning
by Frances MadesonWritten Word, Spoken Word
November 13th, 2014
Blogger Frances Madeson shares the surreal proceedings in the oral arguments of the SWEPI v. Mora County, NM, case. SWEPI is suing to overturn Mora County's Community Water Rights and Local Self-Governance Ordinance.
Global Exchange's People to People Blog: Fracking Corporations Played the Democracy Game – Two Communities Set New Rules this Election
by Tish O'Dell & Shannon BiggsGlobal Exchange People to People Blog
November 12th, 2014
Growing numbers of communities - including Athens, OH, and Mendocino County, CA - banned fracking by asserting their inalienable right to make governing decisions, and elevating community rights above corporate claimed "rights" when they harm a community.
Punishing Democracy
by Ben Price, National Organizing DirectorCELDF
November 10th, 2014
Denton, TX, joins a growing number of communities being sued by their own government and corporate entities, to punish communities for democratically enacting bans on fracking. The LNG prosperity myth
November 9th, 2014
Blogger Magix reveals the false claims of energy corporations in favor of an LNG pipeline cutting through Coos County, OR, and what residents can expect from corporate opponents of the community's Coos County Right to Sustainable Energy Future Ordinance, headed for the ballot next May.
2014 Election Update: Record Number of Community Rights Initiatives on Ballot
November 5th, 2014
Community Bills of Rights advance on Election Day 2014, with a record number of initiatives on the ballot, and a growing number of communities determined to drive those rights forward.
Colorado Community Rights Network Launches Fundraiser for State Ballot Initiative
October 17th, 2014
The COCRN calls for support to advance the Colorado Community Rights Amendment for the state wide ballot in 2015. Check out their fundraising video on INDIEGOGO.
Network Coordinator to Advance the New Hampshire Community Rights Network
July 25th, 2014
CELDF announces Michelle Sanborn as our new New Hampshire Community Rights Network Coordinator. Michelle led her hometown of Alexandria, NH, in adopting a Community Bill of Rights banning unsustainable energy development projects in March 2014.
Why the People of the Big Island Can’t Ban GMOs Without Challenging Corporate “Rights”
by Kai Huschke
July 11th, 2014
A simple ban on GMOs in Hawai'i County misses addressing our structure of law and governance that allows GMOs at all. To successfully stop them, ordinances are needed that challenge that structure and remove corporate claimed "rights" to plant GMOs against community wishes.
CELDF Statement on New York Fracking Decision
July 1st, 2014
We congratulate the victory in the New York Court of Appeals for banning fracking. We also recognize the Court, rather than affirming communities' right to local self-governance, instead affirmed the state legislature may at any time remove those bans. Read more here.
Daily Kos: New Civil Rights Movement
by occupystephanieDaily Kos
June 15th, 2014
A diary from occupystephanie draws parallels between Community Rights and other rights' movements, and describes CELDF's work with municipalities across the U.S. to leverage those rights to protect ourselves and the natural environment from corporate harms.
People to People Blog: Why Mora County New Mexico is Fighting Frackers for Your Rights, too
by Kiara CollinsGlobal Exchange
June 10th, 2014
Global Exchange's Kiara Collins explores Mora County, NM's, fight for all communities' rights.
Community Rights Papers #2: NIMBY
June 7th, 2014
In Community Rights Papers #2, CELDF explores "NIMBY" and other corporate propaganda, and how communities are rejecting that propaganda to create the viable & sustainable communities they envision.
Global Exchange's People to People Bog: Community Rights & Fracking Ban Tour hits Mendocino County
by Shannon BiggsGlobal Exchange People to People Blog
May 20th, 2014
CELDF partner, Global Exchange, works with Mendocino County, CA, residents who are threatened with fracking. Residents are using Community Rights to protect themselves, gathering signatures for a Community Bill of Rights initiative banning fracking for the November ballot.
Mora County Legal Defense Fund
May 15th, 2014
The Mora County Legal Defense Fund was formed to protect Mora’s Community Rights – including their right to clean air and water, a healthy environment, and local self-governance – as they face a subsidiary of Royal Dutch Shell, which claims a constitutional right to frack against the will of the people of Mora.
Community Rights Papers
May 7th, 2014
CELDF announces the launch of its Community Rights Papers, a series of papers on the pioneering Community Rights Movement.
Statement of County Commissioner John Olivas, Chairman, Mora County, New Mexico Board of Commissioners
by John Olivas
March 20th, 2014
Mora County, NM, Commission Chairman John Olivas calls on communities across the U.S. to support the people of Mora County as they face corporate assaults to have their Community Bill of Rights Ordinance banning fracking overturned. Only through standing together, he says, can we recreate “we the people,” and begin to build the communities we envision.
Not The Item: Blog post - Democracy School at Susquehanna University
Not The Item
March 19th, 2014
Democracy School in Selingsrove, PA, in February 2014, revealed for particpants the structure of law we live under that keeps us from getting what we want in our communities - and offered what we can do about it.
CELDF's February Update
February 24th, 2014
Read about upcoming Town Meetings in New England, where residents will vote on their CELDF-drafted Community Bills of Rights ordinances; CELDF in Ecuador for Rights of Nature; and our upcoming Democracy Schools.
CELDF in Octavalo, Ecuador, for a Rights of Nature conference.
February 16th, 2014
CELDF, a founding member of the Global Alliance for the Rights of Nature, joined in an international gathering hosted by the Alliance in Octavalo, Ecuador, in January. Read more here.
Daily Kos - Food Fight: Local Media Coverage
by occupystephanieDaily Kos
February 11th, 2014
A diary from occupystephanie on Oregon Community Rights and sustainable food systems in the face of hostile state and corporate interests.
CELDF's January 2014 Update
January 31st, 2014
Read about what's happening in Colorado, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Maine, and New Hampshire. Click here to learn more!
FAQs - Pennsylvania Supreme Court Ruling on Act 13
December 20th, 2013
Q. Does the Act 13 ruling ban fracking in Pennsylvania? A. No. The Act 13 ruling allows municipal governments to return to their status prior to the adoption of Act 13 – that of being able to adopt local zoning ordinances which control where oil and gas drilling can occur on the surface within the community.
Resilience: A New Movement for Community Self-Determination
by David BollierResilience
December 18th, 2013
Blogger David Bollier sees Community Rights Networks as an antidote to corporations forcing themselves into communities and causing harm.
CELDF partner in Rights of Nature work, Fundacion Pachamama, Shut Down by Ecuadorian Government
December 6th, 2013
CELDF partner, Fundacion Pachamama, was shut down this week by the Ecuadorian government. Learn more on how you can help.
Center for Effective Government: Local Officials Standing Up to Protect Their Communities from Fracking
Center for Effective Government
December 5th, 2013
As Mora County, NM, and Lafayette, CO, face oil and gas industry challenges to their Community Bills of Rights banning fracking, we are re-posting an article from the Center for Effective Government on CELDF's work in providing support to communities through Community Rights.
Press Release: East Boulder County United statement on COGA's lawsuit against Lafayette's Community Rights initiative
East Boulder County United
December 4th, 2013
East Boulder County United is the community group supporting Lafayette, CO's, Community Rights initiative banning fracking - adopted by 60% of the voters this fall. They take a stand against the oil and gas industry as a lawsuit is filed to overturn the will of the people to protect their air and water.
Press Release: Ohio Community Rights Network Launched
November 18th, 2013
Residents from 11 Counties attended a statewide meeting calling upon communities across the state to join together in a Community Rights movement to elevate the rights of people, their communities, and nature, above the claimed "rights" of corporations.
November 2013 Elections Update
November 7th, 2013
Read here about election results in Colorado - where the 1st community in the state adopted a CELDF-drafted Community Bill of Rights banning fracking - and in Ohio, where the 4th community in the state adopted a similar initiative.
CELDF's Thomas Linzey at the New Mexico Coalition for Community Rights Symposium on November 2nd in Santa Fe
November 2nd, 2013
The New Mexico Coalition for Community Rights (NMCCR) held it's first annual symposium in Santa Fe on November 2nd. See Thomas Linzey's presentation here.
KVSF 101.5 The Julia Goldberg Morning Show: CELDF Executive Director discusses local rights movement
by Julia Goldberg Morning ShowKVSF 101.5 The Voice of Santa Fe
October 31st, 2013
CELDF's Thomas Linzey talks about a new Community Rights movement to change our structure of law so that communities' rights to clean air & water, to create local & sustainable systems, & the right to local self-governance are recognized over corporate "rights" to cause harm.
CELDF's Northwest Community Rights Organizer Kai Huschke speaks on Washington's Initiative I-517, on the ballot 11/5. Click here to listen.
October 30th, 2013
CELDF's Kai Huschke speaks on Washington's Initiative I-517, on the ballot 11/5. I-517 in part protects residents' right to vote on qualified initiatives.
October 2013 CELDF Update
October 17th, 2013
Read here about Sangerville, ME's, Community Bill of Rights; the Oregon legislature's attempts to preempt local communities; CELDF's Farm and Food Rights Summit in Hawaii; and CELDF in Australia.
September 2013 CELDF Update
September 25th, 2013
Learn about CELDF in Australia, growing efforts to keep Community Rights initiatives off the ballot, and our upcoming Democracy Schools.
Frack-Backers Launch Anti-Democratic Strikes
by Ben PriceCELDF
September 12th, 2013
A flurry of procedural attempts to keep people from voting on their own qualified Community Bills of Rights initiatives is taking place in Ohio.
Why a Rights-Based Ordinance in Nottingham?
August 10th, 2013
Chris Mills, co-founder of the Nottingham Water Alliance, writes on why a Community Rights Ordinance for Nottingham.
July 2013 CELDF Update
July 8th, 2013
From details about a new Community Rights Movement, to where and how Community Rights are being asserted, see what's happening this month with CELDF and our partners. Local Lawmaking: A Call for a Community Rights Movement
by Thomas Linzey, Esq, Executive
July 2nd, 2013
CELDF's Thomas Linzey, Executive Director, on communities across the country practicing non-violent, civil disobedience through municipal law-making. These communities are challenging our legal system, stopping harmful corporate practices and creating the sustainable communities they envision. It is the beginnings of a Community Rights movement.
CELDF partner Paul Cienfuegos speaks in Portland, OR
May 27th, 2013
CELDF partner Paul Cienfuegos speaks in Portland, OR on 5/25 at a Rally Against Monsanto. Click here & go to 25:30 to see his speech about the Community Rights Movement.
Read the Dirt: Does Food Sovereignty Exist in the United States? Food and the Community Rights Movement
by Trisha MandesRead the Dirt
May 8th, 2013
Trisha Mandes on the Community Rights Movement to challenge corporate and state hegemony over our food systems.
CELDF Statement: A New Civil Rights Movement: Liberating Our Communities from Corporate Control
May 6th, 2013
A Pennsylvania Judge Holds That Corporations Are Not “Persons” Under the Pennsylvania Constitution.
Voices of Central PA: Monday Morning Pipeline News
by Katherine WattVoices of Central PA
April 9th, 2013
State College residents are facing a gas pipeline running through their community. Resident Katherine Watt urges City Council to recognize this issue is about community rights to protect their own health, safety, and welfare, as asserted in their Home Rule Charter amendment establishing a Community Bill of Rights. Matt Damon's "Promised Land": The Good, Bad, and Misrepresented
by Alexander
January 8th, 2013
Alexander Lotorto reviews Matt Damon's movie Promised Land, in part praising its bringing attention to the issue of shale gas drilling and fracking, while critiquing its depiction of PA women and rural townspeople. Read more here.
Lee Einer of the New Mexico Coalition for Community Rights, interviews CELDF's Thomas Linzey, E.D., in the Fall 2012 edition of EcoSource Magazine
December 23rd, 2012
Linzey begins by reframing the regulatory system, including the permitting process, as regulating the rate of destruction of nature, and the impact corporate “rights” has on communities that want to protect nature. He talks about the groundwork being laid today by communities passing Community Bill of Rights that ultimately will drive constitutional change to create a new legal framework stripping corporate "rights" and recognizing nature’s and communities’ rights.
CELDF's Executive Director Thomas Linzey returns to Craig Barnes' Our Times on Santa Fe's Public Radio KSFR
December 12th, 2012
Craig Barnes of Our Times interviews Thomas Linzey, examining our regulatory system, how it regulates the rate of destruction and our activism, and how we can do things differently through challenging the structure and asserting community rights.
View the trailer for “Rooted Lands – Tierras Arraigadas,” chronicling Community Rights organizing in New Mexico to protect residents and the land
October 2nd, 2012
View the trailer for “Rooted Lands – Tierras Arraigadas,” chronicling Mora County, NM residents’ grassroots efforts leading to the first Community Rights Ordinance in the county, and how it is drawing communities together from across the state to stop gas and oil drilling and assert community rights and the rights of nature.
CELDF's Associate Director Mari Margil is interviewed by KOWS Radio Occidental's Ken Rose on his program, What Now
September 17th, 2012
CELDF's Associate Director Mari Margil speaks to the structure of law we live under that prevents us from asserting our rights to local self-governance and creating sustainable communities, and what communities across the country are doing to challenge and change that structure.
KUNM: Las Vegas Passes Ban on Drilling
by Sidsel OvergaardKUNM
April 3rd, 2012
Sidsel Overgaard of KUNM New Mexico's Community Powered Public Radio reports on Las Vegas, New Mexico's historic action to pass a Community Bill of Rights ordinance to protect their water and prohibit shale gas drilling and fracking.
Wisdom Voices: Thomas Linzey - "We're beginning to awake from our slumber"
by Joanne BoyerWisdom Voices
April 1st, 2012
Grassroots organizing. Local communities reinserting themselves into the decision making process that impacts their communities. “We the People” reclaiming our role in democracy. Those elements serve as the most effective tools at our disposal today to fight the environmental battles of the 21st century says Thomas Linzey, Executive Director and co-founder of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund. “There cannot be sustainability unless people who are impacted by certain decisions are actually making the decisions about what impacts their communities,” Linzey said in a recent interview with Wisdom Voices.
Our Times: Program host Craig Barnes interview CELDF's Executive Director Thomas Linzey on KSFR 101.1 FM Santa Fe Public Radio
by Craig BarnesOur Times
February 4th, 2012
Our Times host Craig Barnes interviews CELDF's Executive Director Thomas Linzey on the Community Rights Movement emerging out of CELDF's grassroots work across the country with local municipalities to subordinate corporate rights to the rights of communities to self-governance.
Earth Air Waves: An End to Begging and Pleading?
by Sidsel OvergaardKUNM
January 24th, 2012
Sidsel Overgaard of KUNM, New Mexico's Community Powered Public Radio, interviews CELDF's Thomas Linzey about elevating community rights and rights of nature above corporate "rights" to protect local communities and ecosystems.
CELDF's Executive Director Thomas Linzey is interviewed by Faren Dancer of KTRC 1260 AM "Unicopia Green Radio"
by Faren DancerUnicopia Green Radio
January 20th, 2012
CELDF's Executive Director Thomas Linzey is interviewed by Faren Dancer of KTRC 1260 AM "Unicopia Green Radio" on corporate "rights", and how communities are using their local municipal government to elevate community rights above those claimed by corporations.
Global Exchange's People to People Blog: The Best Government the 1% Can Buy: Is Reversing Citizens United or Corporate Personhood Enough?
by Shannon BiggsGlobal Exchange
January 19th, 2012
Which president told Congress: “I recommend a law prohibiting all corporations from contributing to the campaign expenses of any party…let individuals contribute as they desire; but let us prohibit in effective fashion all corporations from making contributions for any political purpose, directly or indirectly?” If you recognize this Presidential quote, it probably means you’re a history buff (or you watch too much Jeopardy). The correct answer: Who was Theodore Roosevelt? While the speech has become a notable quotable, it’s often forgotten that it followed public outrage surrounding Roosevelt’s acceptance of huge corporate contributions that locked-in his election in 1904.
KALW Local Public Radio's Your Call: An Interview with CELDF's Thomas Linzey and Global Exchange's Shannon Biggs
by Rose AlguilarKALW
January 5th, 2012
Rose Alguilar, host of Your Call in San Francisco, CA on KALW 97.1FM, interviews CELDF's Executive Director Thomas Linzey and Global Exchange's Director of Community Organizing Shannon Biggs about how communities can organize to change local laws to protect themselves from corporate interests and create the communities they envision.
KDNK Community Radio's Shifting Gears: An Interview with CELDF's Mari Margil
KDNK Community Radio
January 3rd, 2012
William Evans, host of KDNK Community Radio program Shifting Gears in Carbondale, CO, interviews CELDF's Associate Director Mari Margil on the structure of law we live under that limits us from asserting our rights to health and the rights of nature--and how we can assert those rights through a grassroots movement.
KDNK Community Radio's Shifting Gears: An Interview with CELDF's Thomas Linzey - Part 1
KDNK Community Radio
December 16th, 2011
William Evans, host of KDNK Community Radio program Shifting Gears in Carbondale, CO, interviews CELDF's Executive Director Thomas Linzey on using municipal law-making to stop unwanted corporate projects and create the sustainable communities people envision.
KDNK Community Radio's Shifting Gears: An Interview with CELDF's Thomas Linzey - Part 2
KDNK Community Radio
December 16th, 2011
William Evans, host of KDNK Community Radio program Shifting Gears in Carbondale, CO, interviews CELDF's Executive Director Thomas Linzey on using municipal law-making to stop unwanted corporate projects and create the sustainable communities people envision.
CELDF's Gail Darrell on the talk radio show The Pulse
by Emelyn Lybarger
December 1st, 2011
The Organic View: When Civil Rights Matter: The Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund
by June StoyerThe Organic View
November 3rd, 2011
When it comes to taking action against a corporation that has violated your rights, it seems as though it is going to be an uphill battle. The corporations are equipped with an army of attorneys, have very deep pockets and seem to have mastered the art of manipulation, especially when it comes to dealing with beaurocracy. However, there is hope. Citizens can actually take matters into their own hands at the local level, where justice can be served. Enter the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund. The CELDF works with communities across the country – from New England to California, from Pennsylvania and Virginia, to Spokane, Washington....In this segment of The Organic View Radio Show, host, June Stoyer talks to Ben Price about how citizens can take action at the local level!
Thomas Linzey - How Things Change
The recent “occupy” movements across the country – including a now bundled-up contingent in the center of Spokane – continue to raise one of the major political questions of our times: “How do people fix a clearly broken system?”
Observer-Reporter: Letter to the Editor: Democracy has place in Peters Twp.
by Faith BjalobokObserver-Reporter
October 18th, 2011
The stone is cast and the amendment to ban drilling will appear on the Peters Township ballot. The stage is set and as maybe predicted based on past behavior, the informal fallacy argumentum ad baculum (appeal to the stick) will be launched by those opposed to the drilling ban.
Turning Occupation into Lasting Change
by Thomas Linzey and Jeff Reifman
October 11th, 2011
CELDF: The Real Frackasaurus Coloring Book
by Ben Price, Projects DirectorCELDF
August 30th, 2011
With a corporate challenge to its local law, you might think South Fayette finds itself in the middle of a battle over democratic local self-governance. But by avoiding the core question of who has rights in South Fayette Township (the people, or corporations?), and by attempting to regulate the location of fracking in a way the State seems to say is legal, rather than banning it on the grounds that fracking is a violation of fundamental rights that belong to everyone, the municipality set up its residents for a fall nine months ago, and hundreds of other municipalities are following the same legal advice: to color inside the lines; work within the system; and don’t rock the boat.
Washington Times: Don't Frack with Our Water: Battles Fought at Town Meetings
May 24th, 2011
CELDF Comment: ex-PA Governor and gas fracking industry consultant Tom Ridge: "Critics of the have to ignore those folks,” Mr. Ridge said. “Accidents will happen. If you’re going to make the perfect the enemy of the good, that’s the wrong mindset.” ...and Matt Pitzarella, spokesman for Range Resources, one of the largest players in the industry...believes there is a “highly organized, highly motivated base of opposition” to gas drilling. Organizations like the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund visit small towns and work with local officials to draft ordinances designed to keep gas companies out, he said.
Pachamama Hosts Global Alliance for Rights of Nature in San Francisco
May 3rd, 2011
Thomas Linzey, Executive Director of CELDF, participates in a panel discussion on the history and development of the rights of nature, hosted by The Pachamama Alliance.
This Week on KMUD Radio: CELDF's Gail Darrell
by Emelyn Lybarger
April 1st, 2011
Join us! CELDF’s Gail Darrell will be on KMUD radio in Humboldt County, California this Sunday, April 3rd from 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm PT.
CELDF’s Shireen Parsons to speak at Clarion University’s public forum on impact of Marcellus shale drilling
by Emelyn Lybarger
February 16th, 2011
On February 28th, 7:30 – 9:30 p.m. in the Marwick Boyd Auditorium at Clarion University, Shireen Parsons will participate in the public forum discussion regarding fracking, or hydraulic drilling, in the Marcellus shale.
‘Fracking’ issue tests citizens’ authority
January 10th, 2011
Claims that drilling corporations, shielded by a state law lobbied for by drilling corporations, possess the right to do what they want, when they want and where they want is an assault on people’s rights to protect their communities. Human beings alone should have constitutional rights, not corporations.
Peters Twp., Washington County PA: Marcellus Shale Awareness Group to meet Jan. 5
December 29th, 2010
"Drilling into the Marcellus Shale and its effect on our environment is something that we, as a community, need to start talking with each other about," said group member Ellen Mavrich. "The risk involved for our residents must be understood and all options must be carefully considered. Ultimately, the citizens of Peters Township should decide what happens in Peters Township."
Does Nature have Rights? -- Thoughts on Democracy School
by Michael CollinsAssociation for Conservation Real Estate
December 5th, 2010
CELDF note: Here's a commentary from one of our Democracy School graduates. Maybe it's time for you to host a School in your community... "Among the many notions I took away from that class, the two that have stayed with me is that corporations once had to serve the public’s interest. If it failed to do that, its charter could be revoked. The other one is the idea that nature, in some way, has rights, that can codified, at least locally, and now I learn, throughout a country."
Lehman denies people's right to get action on gas drilling
by Tom JiuntaCitizens Voice
November 15th, 2010
When the state acts to deny the rights of the people, it is the state and not the people who stand on the "wrong ground." Self-government is being denied when the Oil and Gas Act of Pennsylvania, written under the influence of the oil and gas industries, develops "preemptive" laws. The people have the right and the duty to protect themselves, their communities, their families and the livability of their environment for future generations. Rights are higher law than state regulations. If we have no control over our local community governance then we really do not live in the democracy we think we do.
CELDF Says it is Ready For Fight.
by Mark NootbaarWDUQ 90.5 FM
November 10th, 2010
Councilman Doug Shields, who is the lead sponsor of the bill, has been working closely with the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund on that front. The group helped to write the legislation and CELDF Projects Director Ben Price says they will be there to help. “We’ve certainly volunteered to offer our services,” says Price, “It could be assistance, consultation with whatever legal council is secured by the city.”
Shale gas can pollute the air, too...But Marcellus companies might even profit from preventive measures
November 10th, 2010
CELDF note: Joe Osborne's essay title suggests he's going to explain how fracking is a threat to people and nature because it poisons the air...not just the water in communities where drilling is imposed. One might expect that the gist of such an essay would be that the drilling should be prohibited, since toxins in the air we all breath should be an unacceptable price to pay for an energy source that's no better than dirty coal, when all the pollutants are factored together from extraction to use. But that's not what the essay is about.
DuBois council hears concerns about gas drilling
by Josh WoodsThe Progress
October 26th, 2010
Bill Belitskus, co-chair of Northwestern Pennsylvania Community Rights Network, has appealed to DuBois City Council to draft an ordinance prohibiting oil and gas extraction in residential areas. Belitskus presented information on draft ordinances to be considered in Fayette and Allegheny counties focused on protecting citizens from unfavorable or inappropriate development.
Gas Drilling and Your Rights
by Quakertown Branch LibraryQuakertown, PA
October 23rd, 2010
In response to high interest by landowners, lease-owners, their neighbors and the people who live downstream of proposed gas drilling, the Bucks Transition Group is offering a free public forum for helpful information about the rights and protections for the people of Pennsylvania. Shireen Parsons will discuss Pennsylvania citizens’ rights and possibilities of redress. Parsons is a community organizer for the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund in PA.
Democracy School Coming To Belfast, ME
October 17th, 2010
This program will take place at the Unitarian Universalist Church (around the corner from the Belfast Library) on October 30th from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The tuition is $100 which includes an extensive curriculum, and there are some full or partial scholarships available. Flyers are available in the Monroe Town Hall lobby. To register, or ask questions, please contact Chad Nicholson at 541-3649 or e-mail
Letter to the Editor: A Corporate State
by Thomas LinzeyPittsburgh Post-Gazette
October 10th, 2010
But it's not just because gas drilling corporations have more money than municipal governments. It's because state government and corporate decisionmakers work hand-in-hand to ensure that state law overrides local laws even when those local laws protect communities and the environment better than state law.
Taking back our rights to fish
by Carmine GorgaGloucester Times
October 10th, 2010
I have personally investigated the case of federal fisheries regulations and shown that the record is clear: neither economists, nor environmentalists, nor government bureaucrats have any right to impose the regulations they have been imposing upon the fishermen during the last 20 or more years. Indeed, those rules and regulations have been depriving the fishermen of their rights to fish, their right of access to the common wealth of our natural resources and appropriate it on the basis of their labor.
Check out our Facebook page!
by Mari Margil
August 17th, 2010
Northwestern Pennsylvania Community Rights Network launches with a blog
July 19th, 2010
he Northwestern Pennsylvania Community Rights Network understands that it is time to protect our communities through an aggressive rights-based initiative, which establishes the right to local decision-making on issues with direct local impact. The Network questions the use of “regulation” (adjusting and documenting the rate of destruction) and “mitigation” (putting Band-Aids on amputations), which negotiate away the absolute rights of people, communities and nature.
Announcing Spokane Democracy School in August
by Stacey Schmader
July 13th, 2010
Check Out CELDF's June Newsletter
by Stacey Schmader
July 13th, 2010
Press Release: Local Law declares “corporate rights” cannot compete with the rights of living people.
June 17th, 2010
The practical implications of the law are significant. The Town Select Board and the people at Town Meeting can adopt laws that promote sustainable practices and development based on the aspirations of the community, rather than bowing to the claims of corporate lawyers that local laws may not “interfere” with corporate priorities. In addition, corporate representatives cannot claim to have “legal standing” that obliges the Town to allow them equal rights to testify and influence local decision-making. The new law recognizes the people as the source of governing authority and that corporations are “creatures of the state,” created with the people’s blessing, without unalienable rights. As such, their activities are subject to governance by the community in which they operate.
Mt. Shasta Community Rights Project Report Released --"Mt Shasta Water Rights: WHO DECIDES?"
by Mt Shasta Community Rights Project
May 17th, 2010
In partnership with Global Exchange and Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, proponents of the Mt. Shasta City Community Water Rights & Self-Government Ordinance are working to pass an ordinance that will prohibit corporations from withdrawing water from the municipal aquifer and will also prohibit weather manipulation from cloud seeding in the Mount Shasta keystone bioregion.
Spokane Democracy School June 4-5, 2010
by Mari Margil
May 10th, 2010
Mt. Shasta Community Water Rights Ordinance to Be put to Vote
by Skye KinkadeMount Shasta Area Newspapers
April 27th, 2010
The Mount Shasta City Council voted unanimously Monday evening to order a special report on the Mt. Shasta Community Water Rights and Self Governance Ordinance, which would prevent corporations from cloud seeding and bulk water extraction within Mount Shasta city limits.
Press Release: Packer Township to enforce environmental standards the State says are too strong: Municipality rejects State preemption
by Ben Price
April 6th, 2010
The new Ordinance under consideration asserts that the “Pennsylvania legislature has repeatedly violated the right of Packer Township residents to govern their own municipality” and calls for “the outright nullification of the doctrine of preemption when it prohibits the people of Packer Township from adopting higher standards than those set forth in state law, but also requires the people of Packer Township to refuse to recognize the authority of the Attorney General or the courts, when those entities attempt to enforce the legislature’s illegitimate acts.”