New Letters – Please Print and Mail

Have you contacted our Senators, Governor McAuliffe, and FERC yet to ask them to extend the scoping period and provide another scoping meeting in Nelson? Thank you! Senators Kaine and Warner have filed comments with FERC in response to our requests; but we need more from them. We don’t have much time left to make this request. We have rewritten and updated our letters to legislators, so even if you previously mailed letters from us, you can still send these. Click here to see the letters in PDF.

Please download, sign and mail these letters and ask your friends and family throughout Virginia to, as well! We need to make it clear that the ACP is an issue that concerns people throughout Virginia. Click here to download in Word form.

Music for the Mountains

Festival at Devil’s Backbone Brewery, 4:00-9:30 pm, Saturday July 18, 2015Tickets now available!

Come join neighbors from across the Commonwealth to enjoy “Music for the Mountains”, raising funds to fight the Atlantic Coast Pipeline.  The day will feature the music of Trees on Fire, The Will Overman Band, The Sally Rose Band, Gene and Gayla Mills – more to be announced.  Food by Blue Ridge Pizza, BBQ Bar, Carpe Donut, Claudia’s and more will be available.

Our mission is to bring together Virginians in the fight against the Atlantic Coast Pipeline. To save not only our mountains but our water, farmlands and landowner rights. We will have speakers and information tables to educate and share materials. We are inviting our elected officials and those running for office.  Money raised will help pay for a tri-county economic impact study, to help offset landowner legal costs, and to support organizational costs moving forward.

Tickets are $25, kids under 12 are free.

Sponsoring organizations are Friends of Augusta, Friends of Nelson, Free Nelson, Augusta County Alliance, Wild VA, Pledge of Resistance to the Dominion Pipeline, Pipeline Education Group, and the Chesapeake Bay Group Sierra Club.

Camping information: Misty Mountain: Mention that you are going to the festival. They offer rides so please think about using this service. http://www.mistymountaincampresort.com/

For further information, email friendsofnelson@gmail.com

New Study from Dominion Pipeline Monitoring Coalition

JNF-CGV-883Case Study #1, Part 1 – Columbia Gas, Giles County, VA,” prepared by Rick Webb of the Dominion Pipeline Monitoring Coalition discusses a 12″ Columbia Gas of Virginia Pipeline on sloped terrain. The 42″ Atlantic Coast Pipeline will multiply this damage and the associated problems will be greater. This is the “pipeline no one will ever see” that Governor McAuliffe cites in the news.

Excerpted from the study:

“This case study is based on a project that is small by comparison to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) and the other 42-inch pipelines proposed to cross the central Appalachian mountains. The potential for water resource problems will be greatly multiplied for the proposed larger projects, both in terms of severity and geographic extent.

  • The CGV project crossed only one steep mountain; the ACP project will cross twenty or more steep mountains.
  • The CGV project was co-located within an existing pipeline corridor; the ACP project will require clearing and excavation of a completely new corridor.
  • The CGV construction corridor was 75 to 125-feet wide; the ACP construction corridor will be at least 125-feet wide.
  • The permanently cleared corridor for the CGV project is 40-feet wide; the permanently cleared corridor for the ACP will be 75-feet wide.
  • The excavated pipeline trench for the CGV project was 6-feet deep and 6-feet wide; the excavated pipeline trench for the ACP project will be 8 to 12-feet deep and and 21-feet wide.
  • The CGV project within the JNF crossed no large streams; the ACP will cross a series of high-quality streams and rivers.
  • The CGV project within the JNF crossed no major public water supply recharge areas or karst systems; the ACP will cross multiple municipal and private water supply recharge areas and karst systems.”

Round 1: Landowners 1, Dominion 0

Great news! Dominion has announced that due to the ruling in Suffolk in late March (see post from March 24), they are dropping all their pending suits against landowners. They plan to reissue their notification letters under the name Atlantic Coast Pipeline instead of Dominion Transmission Inc., and then re-initiate suits – assuming landowners continue to refuse access (which of course we will!). This represents an undeniable setback for them. Round 1: Landowners 1, Dominion 0.

Click here to read a news report of the Suffolk case, and click here to read a report of Dominion’s April 7 announcement.

Act Now!

One of the most important things we can do to stop the Atlantic Coast Pipeline is to make it clear, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that people all across Virginia are concerned about it. Please take a moment to print out, sign and mail these letters to key decision makers – Senators Kaine and Warner, Governor McAuliffe, and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Even if you have already contacted them, sending them these letters would be very helpful. Click here to see a pdf version these letters (see below for a Word version).

The addresses to write on the envelopes are right on the letters!

These four letters are identical. They:

  1. Ask for an extension on the scoping period (current deadline Apr. 28!) and a second scoping meeting in Nelson
  2. Voice opposition to any route that negatively impacts state or national forests, or the Blue Ridge region
  3. Urge a thorough analysis of need and alternatives
  4. Urge, at a minimum, that the route maximizes the use of existing infrastructure and existing easements

Click here to download a Word version of these letters that  you can edit.

You can open the letters in Word and type in the date, your name and address, or you can print them and write them in.

Thank you so much for helping!

Willing to do more? Can you help us spread the word? We need decision makers to hear from people ALL throughout Virginia. Please send your friends and families throughout Virginia these letters, either directly as an attachment or by including this link (http://friendsofnelson.com/Act-Now) in the body of your email and ask them to help us.

Your help is invaluable and irreplaceable. Thank you.

Atlantic Coast Pipeline Resistance Ride

AtlanticCoastPipelineResistanceRideHate the Atlantic Coast Pipeline? Love cycling? Support the Virginia Student Environmental Coalition from May 9-May 19 in their Atlantic Coast Pipeline Resistance Ride. They will cycle across Virginia following the proposed path of the ACP to amplify the voices of Virginia communities and landowners directly impacted by the ACP and demonstrate a unified student movement against climate change. Learn more and follow their ride on their blog and Facebook page and please consider donating to support their ride! Diana Malsky is a Friends of Nelson volunteer coordinating with the students for the portion of the ride through Nelson – so if you have ideas or want to get involved email her: djmalsky@gmail.com.

Dominion Pipeline Monitoring Coalition Launches Website

The Dominion Pipeline Monitoring Coalition has launched a new website: http://pipelineupdate.org/ Your suggestions and input are welcome.

The following is from the UPDATE page of the website:

BROKEN REGULATORY SYSTEM

Virginia’s Governor McAuliffe has repeatedly declared that the 550-mile Atlantic Coast Pipeline can be built in an environmentally sound way.  He first promised, at a joint Commonwealth-Dominion Press Conference, that the ACP would be the most environmentally responsible pipeline ever built in U.S. history. Although our governor has a limited understanding of the environmental issues associated with mega pipeline construction across the central Appalachian region, he nonetheless persists in promoting the ACP as harmless.

Last week in an Ask the Governor radio interview, he again dismissed our concerns, complaining that:  “Some people act like this is the first pipeline that has ever been built.”

Actually, this would be the first pipeline this large that has ever been built across this type of landscape.

So, the real environmental cost of the ACP will not be fully known until after it is built, if indeed it is built. Meanwhile, we have undertaken case-study investigations of the much-smaller pipelines that have been built in this region.

Our first case study concerns a comparatively small 12-inch pipeline built last year in an existing pipeline corridor across one steep mountain in the Jefferson National Forest. For initial reporting on this case study, see REGULATORY SYSTEM INVESTIGATION.

Our primary finding, thus far:

Although protective regulations are on the books, compliance is lax, and the regulatory system is remarkably ineffective.

Clearly, with so much at stake, we cannot rely on “business as usual.”  The regulatory system is broken, and we invite the governor and everyone else concerned about our central Appalachian mountains, forests, streams, and water supplies to join with us in finding a way to fix it.

If you haven’t already seen it, you should read last week’s editorial on FERC’s pipeline problem in THE RECORDER:  Aww, FERC is frustrated