Attorney Kai Memmer, a volunteer for the Southwest Virginia Chapter of the National Lawyer’s Guild, will train attendees to become Legal Observers. LO’s are needed immediately in the Elliston, VA area, other areas along the MVP route, and where law enforcement and protestors are in proximity to monitor and document interactions. LO’s presence serves to de-escalate tensions on both sides, and is a vital, neutral information gathering tool.
Volunteers are needed for any amount of time. Information on the National Lawyer’s Guild and the Legal Observer program: https://www.nlg.org/our-work/
Training session #1: Wednesday, October 30 at 6pm at the Lucy F Simms Continuing Education Center, Classroom 101, 620 Simms Avenue, Harrisonburg, VA 22802
Training session #2: Wednesday, November 6 at 6pm at the Nelson Memorial Library, 8521 Thomas Nelson Highway, Lovingston VA 22949
Mountain Valley Watch (MVW) is a collaboration of volunteers and experts who observe, document, and report environmental issues related to the construction of the Mountain Valley Pipeline between Wetzel County, West Virginia, and Pittsylvania County, Virginia.
They have a new map on the front page of their website (https://www.newrivergeographics.com/mvw/) with a visual representation of the volunteer reporting happening along the MVP route. You can zoom in and expand individual submissions and view images.
For the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, the Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance’s Compliance Surveillance Initiative (CSI) program Web page (http://abra-csi.org/) includes instructions on how volunteers can become involved in the program, examples of non-compliance issues, and numerous technical resources, including the unique CSI mapping system. There are links to surveillance photographs taken by the ABRA/CSI Pipeline Air Force.
Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance’s Compliance Surveillance Initiative (CSI) program has a redesigned Web page and a new URL: (http://abra-csi.org/). The site includes instructions on how volunteers can become involved in the program, examples of non-compliance issues, and numerous technical resources, including the unique CSI mapping system. There are links to surveillance photographs taken by the ABRA/CSI Pipeline Air Force. Try out the new website, and if you have questions, please direct them to mailto:email@example.com.
The first general information workshop in Augusta County on the pipeline Compliance Surveillance Initiative (CSI) will be held on Saturday, January 5th, 10am-2pm, at the Stuarts Draft Rescue Squad, 10 Manor Rd., Stuarts Draft VA.
While recent wins are to be celebrated, let’s not let our guard down against ACP. Join friends and neighbors getting organized against destructive and damaging construction practices and gain the tools and training you need to blow the whistle on Dominion.
The event is free, but CSI will be providing a light lunch and the form helps them plan for numbers and dietary restrictions. Please be sure to share the link to this form with anyone you invite to this event.
Further information or questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
If you haven’t already, please sign up for the event using our Pipeline Air Force volunteer form here:
The purpose of this training is to introduce volunteers to the use of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), or drones, to monitor construction and preconstruction activities of the fracked gas pipelines that threaten our communities.
Topics to be covered are as follows:
- Why use drones?
- Which drones can you use?
- Flying Safely: Do’s & Don’t’s
- Flying Legally: Rules of the air
- What and where to monitor?
- Taking useful photos and videos
- Advanced mapping missions
- Networking with your neighbors
The CSI will have two DJI Mavic Pro drones present for demonstration. If you own or have access to your own drone, please bring it with you!
This training will include an indoor classroom-style presentation in the Rockfish Lounge followed by a flight and mapping-mission demonstration in the soccer field outside. Lunch will be provided, so please let us know if you have any dietary restrictions.
Important: It is our hope with this program to create a network of citizen aerial monitors across our region who can respond to and document construction non-compliance and environmental degradation at the hands of ACP and MVP developers. This training is not an end-all-be-all for how to fly, you’ll need to practice flying on your own to become proficient. If you cannot attend due to scheduling conflicts or distance, don’t fret, we plan on holding more of these trainings in the coming weeks and months in different communities along the proposed MVP and ACP routes. We also plan to have a live-stream video of this training so stay tuned for updates on how to access that.
Space is limited to 50 people.
The Pipeline Compliance Surveillance Initiative (CSI) is a program developed by the Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance and its member organizations to support citizen efforts to ensure strict application of environmental laws and regulations in the construction and operation of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP). The need for citizen oversight of pipeline construction has been made clear by observations of recent pipeline projects and inadequate regulatory agency response to repeated violations and water resource harm.
Pipeline CSI will focus first on the approximately 200-mile section of the proposed ACP route extending from Harrison County in West Virginia to Buckingham County in Virginia. The extreme earth disturbance required for construction of the ACP in this area of steep mountain sides, high-quality streams, and karst valleys presents an unacceptable risk to water resources.
You can help! Here are the various ways volunteers can participate:
- Work independently or with other organizations to observe and report incidents of both downstream surface water impact and noncompliance with construction requirements.
- May be organized by coordinators affiliated with local or other regional organizations.
- Access for viewing pipeline construction areas will ordinarily be limited to public roads or other public vantage points.
- General guidance for citizen observers is provided on the Pipeline CSI website.
- Can submit incident reports to CSI Central by using methods provided on the Pipeline CSI website or by methods provided by other organizations.
Stream Monitoring Program Volunteers
- Participate in monitoring programs managed by local watershed groups and regional programs such as the Trout Unlimited/West Virginia Rivers Pipeline Monitoring program or the Isaak Walton League Save Our Streams program.
- Take part in training and certification conducted by the monitoring programs.
- Follow protocols and reporting methods established by the monitoring programs.
- Can submit incident reports to CSI Central using methods provided on the Pipeline CSI website or by methods provided by the stream monitoring programs.
Research and Administration Volunteers
- Monitor ACP filings to FERC including the Environmental Compliance and Weekly Status Reports.
- Monitor FERC docket for inspection reports, variance requests, and other ACP constructionrelated documents.
- Review construction-related documents provided by regulatory agencies.
CSI First Responders
- Teams dispatched by CSI Central to investigate reported incidents of surface water impacts or noncompliance with pipeline construction requirements.
- Recruited based on professional or scientific background related to water resources or erosion and sediment control and stormwater management.
- Collect data and investigate reported incidents following Pipeline CSI protocols.
Pipeline Air Force
- Pilots recruited and trained to fly routine pipeline surveillance flights and incident response flights.
- Photographers recruited to obtain aerial imagery of pipeline construction areas.
- Drone operators recruited and trained to obtain aerial imagery of pipeline construction areas.
- Pipeline Air Force participants will follow Pipeline CSI protocols.
CSI Incident Review
- Provide input to the Pipeline CSI Environmental and Forensic Review Teams evaluating incidents of surface water impacts or noncompliance with construction requirements.
- Access to review information will be provided through the online CSI Mapping System.
- Review assistance is requested from professionals with erosion and sediment control and stormwater management backgrounds, as well as from other knowledgeable individuals.
- Training will be scheduled for interested participants, and information concerning regulatory and technical requirements will be provided through the Pipeline CSI website.
BECOME A CSI VOLUNTEER! Go to: http://pipelineupdate.org/csi-help/
Questions? Contact Lew Freeman – email@example.com or 540-468-2769