Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In
Bill de Blasio

De Blasio Takes a Break From Encouraging Car Trips to Scold Big Oil

2:14 PM EST on January 10, 2018

Hypocrisy alert.

Well this is rich.

Mayor de Blasio -- who opposes congestion pricing, treats parking placards as political currency, and has declared war on electric bikes -- is taking Big Oil to court over climate change.

Today de Blasio announced that NYC will sue the country’s five biggest oil producers “alleging climate change and global warming led to Hurricane Sandy and its catastrophic fallout,” Politico reports. The suit will seek “reparations” and attempt to force the companies to pay for city resiliency projects.

De Blasio also called for city pension funds to divest from oil companies.

It's well established that de Blasio fancies himself a climate change leader. But publicity stunts like today's, designed to burnish his bona fides for a perceived national audience, are completely out of sync with the mayor's own transportation policies.

.@NYCMayor does this even as he “does not believe” congestion pricing for car access to Manhattan is a good idea? (because he says it hurts outer borough middle class) See @streetsblog rebuttal

— Andy Revkin (@Revkin) January 10, 2018

De Blasio has tied himself in knots to justify his opposition to road pricing, which would get cars off city streets, fund transit improvements, and generally help shift the nation's largest city to low-carbon transportation. Instead, his big plan to bust Midtown gridlock is a rehash of failed half-measures that would do nothing to discourage driving into the Manhattan core.

He thinks delivery workers should trade their electric bikes for automobiles, threatening non-compliers with fines, property seizure, loss of livelihood, and possible deportation.

To the delight of the teachers union, de Blasio handed out tens of thousands of parking placards in an election year, creating yet more inducements to drive instead of taking transit. City Hall has declined to release records related to how and why the placard deal came about.

De Blasio's grandstanding today is sure to make headlines. But his posture as a bold leader on climate has little in common with his timid policy record.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Adams Caves to Opposition, Abandons Bus Improvement Plan on Fordham Road in ‘Betrayal’

The capitulation on Fordham Road is the latest episode in which the mayor has delayed or watered down a transportation project in deference to powerful interests.

September 22, 2023

Friday’s Headlines: Yes He Said Yes He Will Yes Edition

That headline above is a reference to the last line of James Joyce's Ulysses, which we won't pretend to have read. But we have that ... and other news.

September 22, 2023

Madness: Port Authority Will Spend $8.3M to ‘Study’ Widening Outerbridge Crossing

Will this $8.3 million find out anything we don't know about induced demand?

September 22, 2023

Study: How Low-Income People Really Use Micromobility

Shared bikes and scooters are meeting low-income people's basic mobility needs — but they're not being subsidized like it.

September 22, 2023

School Bus Driver Hits Cyclist, Injures 3, On Major Brooklyn School Bike Route

The crash happened on the route of the weekly Bergen bike bus.

September 21, 2023
See all posts