March 13 & March 27, 2018
Volunteer Pipeline Visual Assessment Program
The Volunteer Pipeline Visual Assessment Program was developed by Trout Unlimited and West Virginia Rivers Coalition to support and train volunteer citizen observers to identify, document and report pollution incidents associated with large-scale pipeline development.
Through a series of free webinars, volunteers will learn about erosion control best management practices used in pipeline development, specific examples of pollution to look for, and how to best document those problems. After the webinar, volunteer observers will be able to report pollution incidents to TU and WV Rivers. To learn more, visit the program webpage.
To participate in the program, please register for one of our free webinar trainings.
For more information, please contact Jake Lemon, TU’s Eastern Angler Science Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
March 15, 2018
Summers County to host MVP Public Hearing
What: Mountain Valley Pipeline Public Hearing
When: 6:00pm, Thursday, March 15
Where: Memorial Building, Hinton, WV
HINTON — With ongoing litigation over the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) in both state and federal courts, the Summers County Commission says it will hold a public meeting about the projects next month.
The meeting will be on the stress added to the community in the form of infrastructure damages, added load to fire and emergency services, hospitals, health department and other infrastructure.
The meeting will be March 15 at 6 p.m. at the Memorial Building.
“By all accounts, MVP is happening,” said local attorney Elise Keaton who believes the meeting is a way for the community to be proactive.
Keaton, who proposed the public meeting, told the commission that just Wednesday morning, MVP had been granted permission to begin working on a spread in Monroe County and also shared that a zoning dispute between the pipeline entities and the Fayette County Commission has not stopped work in that county.
According to the attorney, the pipeline entities have been using the federal Natural Gas Act to trump local authorities.
As proposed, the meeting will consist of the heads of different local authorities such as the county commission, the sheriff, the Hinton Police chief, the local health department, a representative from the West Virginia Division of Highways and a representative from the pipeline group if they agree.
While damage to local infrastructure by heavy industrial traffic is the most obvious cause for concern to Keaton, she also shared her concerns with an influx of workers.
“There will be an influx of transient workers with a lot of cash,” she said. “Along with the positive benefits of them spending that money in our community in legitimate businesses, there are also some negative aspects as well.”
With the invitation to the pipeline entities, Keaton told the commission that she hopes to learn how negative impacts were addressed in other communities.
“The point is basically, let’s get everybody on the same page of what it looks like,” Keaton said. “Then allow the agencies to have conversations with the public, with the county within their own structures as to what they may or may not do to prepare for it.”
While interested in the meeting itself, the commission also raised the question on legal protections in the case of infrastructure damages and if and how the county will be able to hold pipeline entities responsible.
In the recent past, the commission passed industrial construction ordinances that, while they would not be able to halt construction, equate to the county collecting some permitting fees.
“We need to have some kind of performance bonds so that we know they are going to put the property back in a decent condition,” said Commission President Bill Lightner.
While Keaton questioned whether the pipeline entities would approve of such measures, she told the commission that a public meeting will get the community thinking about what needs to be done in the near future.
“It’s my sense that most of the folks we are going to ask to this table haven’t given a tremendous amount of thought to the negative stuff,” she said. “It’s an educational opportunity to raise the issues.”
The attorney also confirmed that local hotels, resorts and campgrounds have already received calls reserving a large portion of their properties in blocks. Full story HERE
March 16, 2018
VMRC Schedules ACP Public Hearing
What: Virginia Marine Resources Commission Public Hearing on Atlantic Coast Pipeline
When: 9:30am – ? , Friday, March 16
Where: Newport News City Council Chambers at 2400 Washington Avenue, Newport News, Virginia
A public hearing will be held by the Virginia Marine Resources Commission (VMRC) beginning at 9:30 a.m. on March 16, 2018, in the Newport News City Council Chambers at 2400 Washington Avenue, Newport News, Virginia, to consider an application submitted by Atlantic Coast Pipeline, LLC to install a natural gas pipeline beneath the bed of 48 non-tidal streams and/or rivers with drainage areas greater than 5 square miles, which are considered to be State-owned subaqueous bottomlands of the Commonwealth, beneath 3 tidal streams and approximately 1.6 acres of tidal wetlands along the designated pipeline corridor in Highland, Bath, Augusta, Nelson, Buckingham, Prince Edward, Cumberland, Nottoway, Dinwiddie, Brunswick, Greensville and Southampton Counties and the Cities of Chesapeake and Suffolk for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline Project (ACP).
Copies of the application may be examined at the VMRC Office, Habitat Management Division.
Send comments/inquiries to: Marine Resources Commission, Habitat Management Division, 2600 Washington Avenue, 3rd Floor, Newport News, Virginia 23607.
Public Notice HERE
FIGHTING PIPELINES ON EVERY FRONT
March 24, 2018
West Virginians for Public Lands Volunteer Leadership Workshop
Learn To Lead And Organize Your Community to Defend Public Lands
What: West Virginians for Public Lands Volunteer Leadership Workshop
When: 9:30am-4:00pm, Saturday, March 24
Where: Buxton Landstreet Gallery, 571 Douglas Rd., Thomas, WV 26292
Ready to take your public lands activism beyond writing letters to decision makers? Ready to inspire others in your community to act? You’re ready to be a West Virginians for Public Lands volunteer leader. We have a fun daylong training to get you there. Whether you are new to volunteering or you are already a conservation leader, this workshop is for you. No prior organizing or volunteer experience is required.
During the workshop, you’ll join a corps of regional volunteer leaders from across the state who are already successfully defending West Virginia’s public lands. They’ll help facilitate the workshop, and will share strategies that work and experiences from the field. Joining the WVPL volunteer leaders are Pat Lane, a seasoned veteran of national campaigns, and WV Rivers’ Matt Kearns, who will provide background on public lands policy.
How to register: Please fill out this form to register. Apply by Friday, March, 16.
Questions: Email Megan Hamilton, mhamilton@WVRivers.org.
Lunch and coffee will be provided. Lodging is not provided, for lodging suggestions go here.
Limited scholarship funds are available for travel to the workshop. Please only apply for funds if financial hardship would keep you from participating in the workshop. Email, Megan Hamilton, email@example.com, for support requests.
West Virginians for Public Lands is an alliance of people, organizations, and businesses coordinated by West Virginia Rivers Coalition, working to defend and enhance the natural and recreational values of our public lands and waters.
More info HERE
April 6, 2018
Community Organizing Summit hosted by the AGWG
We want to help you take action against extraction.
What: Community Organizing Summit, hosted by the Appalachian Gas Working Group
When: Friday, April 6 – Sunday, April 8
Where: Jackson’s Mill, 160 WVU Jackson Mill, Weston, WV
The Appalachian Gas Working Group (AGWG) invites grassroots groups, organizations, activists, and socially conscious folks who are interested in learning the basic tools of grassroots movement building to better their communities in any way, especially those who want to resist the growing threat of oil and gas extraction, to attend our Community Organizing Summit, April 6-8,in Weston, WV.
The goal of the Community Organizing Summit is to empower and strengthen grassroots activism with leadership training, coalition building, and outreach. The Summit will also provide opportunities for in depth learning on select topics.
Grassroots Skill Building:
– Speaking Across Bridges – How to talk with all sides.
– Coalition Building – Strengthening through partnerships.
– Maximizing & Diversifying Your Media and Outreach.
– Community Canvassing – Cold calls, door-to-door, sculpting your “ask.”
– Starting and Building a Campaign – Mission, goal setting, strategies, and more.
– Gas Related Health & Medical Effects – Impact on individuals and community, available resources, and health surveys.
– Permitting and Enforcement – Community oversight, enforcing the law, and protecting your rights.
– Environmental Monitoring – Water, Air, and Land.
– Appalachian Storage Hub, Mid-stream Processes, and What This Means to Your Community – Impact on individuals and community by pipelines, storage facilities, cracker plants, and extraction.
– Fighting Eminent Domain, Co-Tenancy, Forced Pooling, and Right To Trespass – Your rights and how to protect your land.
Registration is required by March 30. Complete your registration for attendance, meals and lodging through Eventbrite:https://
Limited scholarships are available for those who need financial assistance to attend. If you are applying for a scholarship, please fill out this form (https://goo.gl/forms/
For more info please check the event page on Facebook HERE
Public hearings on pipelines in Virginia (2017)
– Aug. 7, 6 to 10 p.m. James Madison University, Festival Conference and Student Center, Grand Ballroom, 1301 Carrier Drive, Harrisonburg. Parking is in lots C11, C12, and D3.
– Aug. 10, 6 to 10 p.m. Longwood University, Jarman Auditorium, 201 High St., Farmville. Parking is in Wheeler Lot, Crafts Lot, High Street Lot, Randolph Lot or other university-owned lots.
– Aug. 14, from 6 to 10 p.m. Dinwiddie High School Auditorium, 11501 Boisseau Road, Dinwiddie. Parking is only in designated areas on school property.
Mountain Valley Pipeline
– Aug. 8, 2017, from 6 to 10 p.m. Radford University, Preston/Bondurant Auditorium, 801 E. Main St., Radford. Parking is only in Lot A, or Lots E and U
– Aug. 9, from 6 to 10 p.m. Chatham High School Auditorium, 100 Cavalier Circle, Chatham. Parking is only in designated areas on school property.
The West Virginia DEP published on July 1 in local newspapers its notice of a comment period for Section 401 certification for the ACP (the agency has already approved 401 certification for the MVP). The comment period concludes August 4. Written comments should be emailed to: firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to: WVDEP Division of Water and Waste Management, Att: Laura Cooper, 601 57th Street SE, Charleston, WV 25304-2345.
Public hearings will be held on:
- Monday, July 31, 6 p.m. – Buckhannon-Upshur High School Audiorium, Buckhannon, WV
- Tuesday, August 1, 6 p.m.-PocahontasCountyHigh School Auditorium, Dunmore, WV
Information provided by: Allegheny Blue Ridge Alliance