Although U.S. Republicans swept key Congressional and gubernatorial races in mid-term elections Tuesday evening, the respected Climate Progress blog spent part of the week tracing important gains in local ballot initiatives and at least one House of Representatives campaign.
In Denton, Texas, voters adopted a ban on natural gas fracking by a 59% to 41% margin. “If you can ban fracking in Texas, in a town with 270 wells, where Big Oil outspent you 10:1, where fracking was invented, then it’s game on everywhere,” Frack Free Denton and the Energy Action Coalition commented on Facebook.
In municipal elections in Richmond, California, oil giant Chevron spent more than $3 million on mayoral and selected council campaigns, after the city sued the company for limited oversight and inadequate inspections leading up to a 2012 refinery explosion that sent 15,000 people to hospital, Climate Progress Co-Editor Kiley Kroh reports. Chevron’s mayoralty candidate lost 51% to 35%, and three council candidates known as Team Richmond all won their seats.
And in Nebraska, Congressional climate denier Lee Terry lost his seat to challenger Brad Ashford in one of the Democrats’ few pickups of the night. “The race was key for climate activists in Nebraska, because the state is poised to become a battleground state over Keystone XL in the coming months,” writes Climate Progress’ Katie Valentine.