Climate change activists tee off on Sioux Falls Mayor Paul TenHaken for retooling sustainability plan
City Hall trimmed down, removed 'trigger words' like 'climate change' from original initiative
Area climate change activists are voicing frustrations over Mayor Paul TenHaken’s decision to walk away from a plan to eliminate the city’s carbon footprint by 2050.
And during a forum on a recently unveiled sustainability plan Tuesday with the Sioux Falls City Council, they accused the mayor of scrapping previously-stated goals to modernize sustainability standards in the city in the interest of business and future political aspirations.
They also say they’ve been shut out of the process since an earlier version of the sustainability plan was reworked after first being rollout in December.
“Regarding sustainability, the mayor has clearly left the building here,” said Jeff Smith, a Sioux Falls resident who was among more than a half dozen who spoke against the Sustainable Sioux Falls framework, which they say had little involvement from a steering committee first assembled in 2022 to help the city address climate change.