Memphis activists push ordinances to protect community against future oil pipelines

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The fight against the Byhalia Pipeline may be over, but a group wants to ensure the company behind it can never come back to Memphis and try to build one.

The group, Memphis Community Against the Pipeline, is calling on the Memphis City Council to act and set limits on what companies like them can do in the future.

It’s a fight that hasn’t ended for many.

MORE: Plans for Byhalia Connection Pipeline abandoned

Members and other organizations gathered at a rally at the National Civil Rights Museum, taking it upon themselves to continue to compel the city council to act in passing two ordinances at their meeting.

Representatives for MCAP, Protect Our Aquifer, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy and Center for Transforming Communities met at the museum where they, along with supporters, listened to passionate speeches about why the ordinances are necessary.

That was followed by a walk to city hall, where that vote will be taking place.

The pair of ordinances, which have been months in the making, fill what the group called “regulatory gaps” in the permitting process.

RELATED: Homeowners say they face legal action against company connected with pipeline

One ordinance sets a 1,500-foot distance between any potential pipeline and a residential neighborhood, and the other creates an infrastructure review board.

The Byhalia Pipeline has been abandoned by Plains All American, the company that sought to construct the pipeline, but supporters said they felt the company could come back and try again.

The votes were scheduled to take place at the city council’s regularly scheduled meeting.