10 States Where Citizens Are Fighting Pipeline Projects
By Alexandra Rosenmann
With the Dakota Access Pipeline nearly 90 percent complete, developers are focusing their attention elsewhere. Meanwhile, protests against additional pipelines throughout the country have yet to receive a tenth of the airtime.
"If you draw a line from Chicago to the Gulf Coast—Houston, Port Arthur, Baton Rouge—that line goes through Patoka, Illinois," John Moody, a spokesman for the Association of Oil Pipelines told the Chicago Sun Times.
"Then start in Cushing, Oklahoma, and draw a line across to Cleveland and Detroit and central Ohio, and that line goes through Patoka. Patoka is a crossroads for energy delivery."
Beyond North Dakota, here are 10 states that have also been battling pipeline projects.
Construction of the 255-mile Nexus Gas Transmission project, a partnership between Houston-based Spectra Energy and Detroit's DTE Energy, is expected to begin by early 2017.
The Dakota Access Pipeline project faced resistance in Iowa long before it reached Standing Rock. In July 2015, landowners in its path urged the Iowa Utilities Board to reject permits needed for the project to proceed.
"Our century-plus-old farm was taken care of for four generations and I will do my best to keep it that way," they wrote in their objection. But the anti-pipeline group Bold Iowa has pledged to keep fighting the four-state, 1,172-mile crude oil pipeline until it becomes operational. The group's direct action includes standing in court with Iowa landowners in the path of the Dakota Access Pipeline battling eminent domain abuse.
Standing Rock's success this December reinvigorated a more than two-year battle to half construction of the Trans-Pecos pipeline, a 148-mile joint venture with Mexico's federal electricity commission, the Comisión Federal de Electricidad.
The company behind the Dakota Access Pipeline is currently planning a 162-mile pipeline that would cut through the Atchafalaya Basin and 11 Louisiana parishes. But resistance to the Bayou Bridge Pipeline has already spread worldwide. Concerned citizens and environmental groups from New Zealand to South Africa have gathered thousands of signatures, leading the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to call for a public hearing in which the water quality permits of the site will be assessed.
The Sierra Club, Chattahoochee Riverkeeper and Flint Riverkeepers filed a motion in late October to expedite review of the Southeast Market Pipelines Project, which includes the $3.2 billion Sabal Trail gas pipeline. Protests have continued for the past month and 16 demonstrators have been arrested thus far.
On Nov. 15, outside the Army Corps of Engineers building, Huntsville protesters gathered in solidarity with the thousands at Standing Rock. The Sabal Trail pipeline is set to cross three states and cover 500-plus miles (86 in Alabama, 162 in Georgia, 268 in Florida).
Diamond Pipeline is a planned 440-mile oil pipeline by Plains All American Pipeline and Valero Energy Corp across 14 counties and five rivers in Arkansas. The project is set to begin by the end of 2016.
8. North Carolina
A nearly 600-mile proposed pipeline drew protests in three cities on Nov. 19. In Pembroke, Fayetteville and Nashville, hundreds marched in opposition to the Atlantic Coast Pipeline which awaits a review by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Dominion Power and Duke Energy's $5 billion project would carry natural gas to North Carolina from fracking operations in West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Sunoco Logistics pushed back the timeline for its Mariner East 2 natural gas liquids pipeline on Nov. 12. The $2.5 billion project has not yet received the necessary approvals, even months after charging Huntingdon County residents who objected to the pipeline being built on their property.
10. New York
The National Fuel Gas Supply Corp. awaits approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to begin its proposed $410 million Northern Access Project in Western New York. Meanwhile, 50 miles outside of New York City, Spectra Energy's pipeline expansion project continues to face controversy.
Reposted with permission from our media associate AlterNet.
Eleven peaceful activists from the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise have taken to the water in inflatable boats with handheld banners to oppose the Statoil Songa Enabler oil rig, 275 km North off the Norwegian coast, in the Arctic Barents sea.
The banners say: "People Vs. Arctic Oil" and are directed at Statoil and the Norwegian government, which has opened a new, aggressive search for oil in the waters of the Barents Sea.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) paved the way Friday for the 600-mile, 42-inch fracked gas Atlantic Coast Pipeline to proceed when it issued the final environmental impact statement (FEIS). A joint project of utility giants Duke Energy and Dominion Energy, the Atlantic Coast Pipeline would move fracked gas from West Virginia into Virginia and North Carolina.
In April, the Sierra Club submitted more than 500 pages of legal and technical comments on FERC's draft EIS, which were joined by more than 18,000 individual comments detailing opposition to the project. The pipeline has been met with widespread opposition, with more than 1,000 people participating in public hearings across the three affected states. The Sierra Club recently requested that FERC issue a new environmental review document analyzing information that came in after or late in, the public comment process.
By Jessica Corbett
"It's time Rex Tillerson step down or be removed," said Gigi Kellett of Corporate Accountability International, following an announcement on Thursday that ExxonMobil will pay $2 million for violating U.S. sanctions against Russian officials while the now-secretary of state was the company's CEO.
"ExxonMobil demonstrated reckless disregard for U.S. sanction requirements," according to enforcement filing released by the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), which issued the penalty. Though the fine is reportedly the maximum penalty allowed, it's pittance to one of the world's most profitable and powerful corporations, which last year reported a profit of $7.8 billion.
New analysis from Amory B. Lovins debunks the notion that highly unprofitable, economically distressed nuclear plants should be further subsidized to meet financial, security, reliability and climate goals. The analysis, which will appear shortly in The Electricity Journal, shows that closing costly-to-run nuclear plants and reinvesting their saved operating costs in energy efficiency provides cheaper electricity, increases grid reliability and security, reduces more carbon, and preserves (not distorts) market integrity—all without subsidies.
By Christian Detisch and Seth Gladstone
In the wake of Senate Republicans' ever-deepening debacle over their flailing attempts to strip health insurance from 22 million people, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is desperate to do something—anything—to show that he can get legislation passed. To this end, he's bypassing the standard committee review process to push a complex 850+ page energy bill straight to the full Senate floor. Perhaps not surprisingly, this legislation, the Energy and Natural Resources Act of 2017, would be a disaster for public health and our climate.
A new law passed this week in South Miami will require all new homes built in the city to install solar panels. The measure, which was inspired by a proposal from a teenage climate activist, will go into effect in September.
The text of the ordinance details the climate impacts facing South Miami.
By Ben Jervey
Just last week, we fact-checked and debunked every line of The Dirty Secrets of Electric Cars, a video produced by Fueling U.S. Forward, a Koch-funded campaign to push fossil fuels. That video represents the group's first public pivot from fossil fuel boosterism to electric vehicle (EV) attacks. More electric vehicle experts are also picking the video apart.
One effort is this video highlighting many of the same falsehoods we wrote about, and which adds key context about some of the video footage. Like, for instance, the fact that the photo that Fueling U.S. Forward claims is a lithium, cobalt or cerium mining operation is actually a copper mine.
By Katherine Paul and Ronnie Cummins
A recent series of articles by a Washington Post reporter could have some consumers questioning the value of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) organic seal. But are a few bad eggs representative of an entire industry?
Consumers are all for cracking down on the fraudulent few who, with the help of Big Food, big retail chains and questionable certifiers give organics a bad name. But they also want stronger standards, and better enforcement—not a plan to weaken standards to accommodate "Factory Farm Organic."