Save the date – CSI training for the general public, Thursday August 30, 2018, at the Nelson Center, 6-9 pm. As members of the Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance, Friends of Nelson and our sister groups are standing up to protect our region’s rights to clean water and the rule of environmental law. State and federal regulators are unwilling or unable to police these proposed unnecessary pipeline projects in earnest, so don’t miss your chance to come learn how to protect our region from harm by volunteering with the Pipeline Compliance Surveillance Initiative (CSI)! More details soon.
The Department of Environmental Quality comment period for the Buckingham compressor station air quality permit is August 8-September 11, 2018. Send your comments! Only comments received between those dates will be considered.
Detailed information about the process, including where to send comments, is on the DEQ Web page, see https://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/BuckinghamCompressorStationAirPermit.aspx
Information on the 2018 Air Permit Application for the proposed ACP CS#2, including excerpts from the document and a link to the full document, as well as a preliminary analysis of the document are on the Friends of Buckingham Web page, see http://www.friendsofbuckinghamva.org/friends/air-permit-hearing-and-comment-period-for-proposed-buckingham-compressor-station-expected-soon/
A video from Miracle Ridge in Bath County VA.
Read the related Washington Post story: Dominion: We have to destroy the Picasso to save the Picasso.
Governor Northam has been invited to Miracle Ridge – will he go??
Although all construction on the MVP has halted after FERC issued a “stop work” order on Friday August 3, the Bluefield Daily Telegraph reported on August 5, 2018, that during Governor Ralph Northam’s Saturday August 4 tour of Bluefield College, he said he wants the Mountain Valley Pipeline to move forward.
“‘I am supportive of moving forward (with the MVP),’ Northam said. ‘We need energy, but we need energy responsibly.’ Northam said he understands the problems associated with the pipeline, including landowner rights and the recent rain and flooding that have dumped ‘too much sediment into waterways. All along the pipeline they need to be conscious of the land and take people’s property rights into account,’ he said. ‘Any compliance issue … we are looking and watching the streams and the rivers closely.’ Northam said any problems with permits to cross federal land should be resolved and the state is cognizant of the work and its impact. ‘We have agencies in Virginia, like the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ),’ he said. ‘I have confidence they are monitoring what is going on. If there is an issue or problem they will (with intervention) be in compliance.'”
The Governor did not acknowledge that DEQ has not been doing its job, has issued violation notices only after repeated submissions by private citizens of documentation of violations, took weeks and gave many excuses before it finally made public the 13,000 comments on waterbody crossings from the comment period ending June 15 (even though the Dominion Pipeline Monitoring Coalition and Wild Virginia have worked together and posted on June 20 what DEQ said it couldn’t do yet). And as of this writing, DEQ has still not posted the promised summary of comments.
Listen to the audio and read the transcript of the Governor in an August 8, 2018, radio interview as he continues to dodge questions and dodge responsibility while speaking in generalizations about his confidence in state agencies.
In his August 5, 2018, blog post, Deny 401 Certification for the ACP, Robert Whitescarver says, “The Virginia State Water Control Board must deny 401 certification for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP). It should have denied 401 certification for the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP). Building these fracked gas pipelines through steep, rough terrain and karst geology is fraught with danger. Construction is already causing massive soil erosion that pollutes our streams, rivers, wetlands, and eventually the Chesapeake Bay.”
Whitescarver cites Northam’s campaign promise, “If we are going do to this, we are going to do it right,” and adds, “Governor Northam, it’s not being done right, and without the right steps forward from your administration, Virginia’s water resources and everyone in the path of these projects will remain at risk.” The blog post goes on to list the many ways in which both MVP and ACP construction are not being done right, and concludes, “Governor Northam, you and you alone can make this right. It’s time for your administration and its agencies to put the citizens of this Commonwealth – our health and safety – above the corporate interests putting us, and our environment, at risk.”
Yes, as Northam himself said, “too much sediment” has been dumped into waterways. And Virginia citizens recognize that there has been too much evasion of responsibility by Northam and his administration.
Contact the Governor’s office and tell him so: 804-786-2211, or www.governor.virginia.gov/constituent-services/communicating-with-the-governors-office/
On August 2, 2018, we posted a story about the comment period and hearings related to the draft air quality permit for the ACP’s proposed Buckingham compressor station (see Send Comments: Air Quality Permit for Compressor Station). Our story included instructions for how/where to comment.
Further detailed information about the process is on the DEQ Web page, see https://www.deq.virginia.gov/Programs/Air/BuckinghamCompressorStationAirPermit.aspx
A few specifics from the DEQ page:
- The Buckingham Compressor Station (BCS) draft permit is the subject of a public comment period beginning August 8, 2018 and ending September 11, 2018. The comment period is specifically for the BCS draft air permit and does not pertain to issues outside the scope of the draft permit such as zoning, noise, traffic or safety.
- Comments will only be accepted during the formal comment period. Comments received either before or after the advertised start and end dates) August 8-September 11, 2018) will not be part of the record and will not be considered. Receipt confirmation will not be provided for comments received during the comment period.
- The September 11, 2018, hearing is a listening session and not a question and answer session. Members of the agency in attendance will not be responding to questions or comments at that time.
- Based on the strong public interest in this facility, it is anticipated attendance will be large. Those wishing to speak will be given a three-minute time restriction in order to allow as many people as possible that want to speak an opportunity to do so in the allotted time. Individuals that wish to make comments during the hearing should bring them in written form to provide to DEQ at the hearing.
- At the end of the comment period, DEQ will compile, review and respond to comments. Comments similar in content may be aggregated for efficiency. DEQ will evaluate the comments and make changes to the draft permit as appropriate. DEQ responses and changes will be completed prior to finalizing any portion of the draft permit and a response to comments document will be prepared and made available to the public. [We wonder how long this will take, given that DEQ as of this date has not yet made available the comments on waterbody crossings from the comment period ending June 15, 2018.]
- DEQ will present a report to the State Air Pollution Control Board (the board) on the permit. The board will take final action on the permit at a future meeting of the board. Consideration at that meeting is not a public hearing or new public comment opportunity on the draft permit. Only those persons who submitted official public comments on the draft permit between August 8 and September 11, 2018 may address the board. Furthermore, comments shall be limited to responding to the summary of the prior proceedings including DEQ’s summary of comments received during the public comment period provided to the board by DEQ.
A final section of the DEQ air quality Web page gives additional information on frequently asked questions not covered by the air permit, including site zoning, noise, light, traffic, worker safety, community safety, and facility need.
Send your comments to DEQ between August 8 and September 11!
Chesapeake Climate Action Network continues to sponsor the summer camp on Bill and Lynn Limpert’s land. CCAN shares this information about the ongoing camp:
“Miracle Ridge,” home of Bill and Lynn Limpert, is home to many important and valuable things, including countless centuries-old trees. But because it sits in the path of Dominion’s Atlantic Coast Pipeline, every single one of those trees are at risk — which is why dozens of campers have joined the Limperts for “No Pipeline Summer: A Camp to Save the Limpert’s Land.”
Just like the beautiful trees, Miracle Ridge is home to many precious memories. This is why we’re running a camp log at Miracle Ridge. Within the log, anyone has the option to write about their experiences during their stay in Miracle Ridge. Ever since the book and pen has been available to everyone, multiple people have written their valuable stories and thoughts. Just like the ones below.
Join us at “No Pipeline Summer” to make your own heartwarming memories, and remember what’s at stake.