In the News
NC legislators' conservation ratings: Zeroes
Oct 2, 2012
The N.C. League of Conservation Voters' annual scorecard awards an unprecedented 44 state legislators zeroes for their votes in the 2012 session. The League had previously handed out only four zeroes since 1999, and none since 2001.
The league calls the 2011-12 legislative session one of the worst for the environment in state history. It charges that the Republican-led chambers, in an anti-regulation drive, made "reckless decisions" in approving hydraulic fracturing, banning policies on sea-level rise, removing key divisions from the environment department and limiting state oversight of toxic air pollutants.
Twenty-nine legislators -- all Democrats -- voted the league's way, earning perfect scores. All the zero scores went to Republicans.
Most interesting about the scorecard is how quickly and deeply divided the political parties have become on environmental issues.
In the 2007-2008 session, the average difference between Democrats and Republicans was about 20 percent in both chambers. In 2011-12, that difference ballooned to 79 percent in the N.C. House and 61 percent in the Senate.