Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

19 Arrested Protesting Gas Storage in Salt Caverns, Including Famed Chef Tony Del Plato

Energy
19 Arrested Protesting Gas Storage in Salt Caverns, Including Famed Chef Tony Del Plato

In a peaceful act of civil disobedience against the proposed gas storage that highlighted the climate crisis, 19 people formed a human chain shortly after sunrise this morning at the north entrance of Crestwood Midstream on Route 14. They blocked two tanker trucks attempting to enter the facility. Among the blockaders were Tony Del Plato, famed chef and co-owner of the Moosewood Restaurant and the Reverend Lesley Adams, retired chaplain of Hobart and William Smith Colleges and current resident of Schuyler County.

Schuyler County deputies arrested the 19 protestors shortly after 7 a.m. as they read aloud from Pope Francis’ recent encyclical letter on climate change, “On Care for Our Common Home.” All were taken into custody, charged with trespassing and released.

To illustrate the contribution of natural gas to global warming, blockaders held banners that read “Methane = Climate Crisis” and “Climate Defenders Against Crestwood.” A seven-foot replica of the Encyclical was also part of the blockade.

Today’s arrests bring the total number of arrests to 359 in the 10-month-old civil disobedience campaign.

Their recitation from the Pontifical document continued the reading that began on June 30 and has continued throughout the summer.

None of the protesters this morning had been previously arrested as part of the We Are Seneca Lake movement, which opposes Crestwood’s plans for gas storage in lakeside salt caverns and which has been ongoing since October 2014.

“Scientists tell us that 350 parts per million is the upper limit for carbon dioxide if we want a stable climate for food production," said Moosewood co-owner and chef, Tony Del Plato, 67, said, We have far surpassed 350. That’s an S.O.S. signal. Today, we surpassed 350 arrests at the gates of Crestwood. That’s an S.O.S. signal, too. Crestwood’s plans to store massive amounts of leaky methane here is a threat to water, food, climate and life itself.”

Earlier this month, the 19 owners of Ithaca’s famed Moosewood Restaurant joined a coalition of more than 340 Finger Lakes businesses and municipalities in opposition to Crestwood.

Read page 1

“In the Episcopal church, we often end our service with the words, 'Send us into the world to do the work you have given us to do, to love and serve.' My work today is to resist Crestwood," said Reverend Lesley Adams, 57, now a resident of Hector, in Schuyler County. "I just don't feel I can sit idly by while Crestwood fills unstable, unlined salt caverns under Seneca Lake with highly pressurized flammable material. If there are fiery explosions killing people or huge increases of salinity killing fish and plants and I have not worked to prevent it, how will I be able to live with my conscience?”

Today’s arrests bring the total number of arrests to 359 in the ten-month-old civil disobedience campaign. Photo credit: We Are Seneca Lake

Peter Arena, 50, of Interlaken in Seneca County agreed. “The plans of Crestwood Midstream to inject millions of cubic feet of pressurized, volatile gases beneath Seneca Lake are a direct threat to the well-being of myself and all that I love," he said. "I believe, as a man raised in the teachings of St. Francis, I have been entrusted to protect and steward this place where I am rooted. Standing here in the path of this industrialization and its consequent damages is my moral duty and obligation.”

Crestwood’s methane gas storage expansion project was approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission last October in the face of broad public opposition and unresolved questions about geological instabilities, fault lines and possible salinization of Seneca Lake, which serves as a source of drinking water for 100,000 people.

YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

EPA Proposes First Methane Cuts for Fracking Industry as Part of Obama’s Climate Efforts

President Obama Gives Shell Final Approval to Drill in the Arctic

1,000 Activists Join Together to Say No to Big Coal


OlgaMiltsova / iStock / Getty Images Plus

By Gwen Ranniger

In the midst of a pandemic, sales of cleaning products have skyrocketed, and many feel a need to clean more often. Knowing what to look for when purchasing cleaning supplies can help prevent unwanted and dangerous toxics from entering your home.

Read More Show Less

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter


JasonOndreicka / iStock / Getty Images

Twenty-five years ago, a food called Tofurky made its debut on grocery store shelves. Since then, the tofu-based roast has become a beloved part of many vegetarians' holiday feasts.

Read More Show Less

Trending

Protestors walk past an image of a Native American woman during a march to "Count Every Vote, Protect Every Person" after the U.S. presidential Election in Seattle, Washington on November 4. Jason Redmond / AFP / Getty Images

By Jessica Corbett

A leading environmental advocacy group marked Native American Heritage Month on Wednesday by urging President-elect Joe Biden, Vice President-elect Kamala Kamala Harris, and the entire incoming administration "to honor Indigenous sovereignty and immediately halt the Keystone XL, Dakota Access, and Line 3 pipelines."

Read More Show Less
Marilyn Angel Wynn / Getty Images

By Christina Gish Hill

Historians know that turkey and corn were part of the first Thanksgiving, when Wampanoag peoples shared a harvest meal with the pilgrims of Plymouth plantation in Massachusetts. And traditional Native American farming practices tell us that squash and beans likely were part of that 1621 dinner too.

Read More Show Less
Former U.S. Sec. of Energy Ernest Moniz listens during the National Clean Energy Summit 9.0 on October 13, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Isaac Brekken / Getty Images for National Clean Energy Summit

By Jake Johnson

Amid reports that oil industry-friendly former Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz remains under consideration to return to his old post in the incoming Biden administration, a diverse coalition of environmental groups is mobilizing for an "all-out push" to keep Moniz away from the White House and demand a cabinet willing to boldly confront the corporations responsible for the climate emergency.

Read More Show Less