The N.C. chapter of the Sierra Club has waded into unusual territory with today's endorsement of state appellate court Judge Sam Ervin IV for N.C. Supreme Court.
It's the first time the environmental organization has endorsed a candidiate running for the state's highest court.
The nod is based on his decisions on the bench and while serving for 10 years on the N.C. Utilities Commission. The Sierra Club lauds him for his role in implementing the Clean Smokestacks Act and the state's Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard, while on the commission.
The group singled out one decision he made as a judge on the Court of Appeals. Ervin wrote a dissenting opinion in a ruling that held the state's sedimentation-control law didn't apply because sediment didn't reach nearby water. A golf course owner had sued a construction company over its work that altered the landscape.
"Judge Ervin has a record of giving appropriate consideration to environmental impacts when making decisions," Sierra Club politicial chairman Ken Brame said in a statement released Thursday. "... Judge Ervin consistently demonstrated an appreciation of the impact his rulings have on the state's natural resources."
Ervin is running against incumbent Justice Paul Newby.