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Union rep apparently threatens corona infections to stop clean energy rule

Enlarge / Power lines run through a national park in San Luis Obsispo, California. (credit: George Rose/Getty Images)

There’s a battle raging in California over the future of natural gas. Environmentalists want building codes to encourage new buildings to be electrically heated in order to reduce carbon emissions. Natural gas utilities and labor unions representing their workers have been united in their opposition to these laws.

In March, Eric Hoffman, president of a local utility workers’ union, used an unusual tactic to stop the adoption of a new clean energy building code in San Luis Obispo, a city on California’s central coast.

“If the city council intends to move forward with another reading on a gas ban, I can assure you there will be no social distancing in place,” Hoffman wrote on March 16, in an email obtained by the Los Angeles Times. “Please don’t force my hand in bussing in hundreds and hundreds of pissed off people potentially adding to this pandemic.”

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