Winchendon Special Town Meeting
to Vote on Resolution to Ban the Pipeline
MONDAY – AUGUST 4, 2014
To see if the Town will vote to adopt the citizen’s petition resolution as included herein, or act in relation thereto. (submitted by Citizen Petition) Winchendon: Ban the proposed gas pipeline that threatens our town, our property values, our pristing environment and we will pay to have it built!
Murdock Middle / High School
3 Memorial Drive
So far, 25 out of 25 towns have passed resolutions, either against the pipeline or fracking or for community rights. Some more than one!
See who has so far ...
Boston Rally A Great Success!
It was a beautiful day and around 500 people came to stand their ground against the Kinder Morgan pipeline. Speakers included landowners, legislators, land conservationist, local activists and more!
Speakers included members of the Clark Family from Deerfield's Clarkdale Farm, Jim Cutler of Ashfield, Shanna Cleveland of Conservation Law Foundation, Leigh Youngblood of Mt. Grace, Rosemary Wessel of No Fracked Gas in Mass, Representatives Kulik, Andrews and Harrington, members of the Climate Summer Team East and a surprise statement from Erinn Cosby, daughter of Bill and Camille Cosby of Shelburne. Music was provided by the Fracked Gas Bomb Jazz Band of Winchendon (and a show-stealing tune by the Raging Grannies), and the event was emceed by Rolling March organizer Mary King.
Lobbying workshops and sessions were lead by Claire Miller of Toxics Action and Joel Wool of Clean Water Action. All day, citizens spoke one on one with legislators about the pipeline issue.
Several Legislators took time our from their busy final week schedule to attend alongside their constituents, and many members of the press were on hand to capture the story.
— See articles and news coverage of the rally
The rally ended with a final march to the State House to deliver three petitions - the Petition to Stop the Pipeline, gathered during the Rolling March calling on the Governor to withdraw his support for the tariff (with at least 700 signatures), Emily Norton's letter to the Governor (delivered with hundreds of signatures on a silver platter), and the Petition to Ban New Natural Gas Pipelines and Champion Sustainable Energy (which crossed over 12,000 signatures the morning of the rally!). Emily's letter and the Petition to Ban New Pipelines are still gathering signatures indefinitely.
— See GCTV's full coverage of the rally speakers from start to finish.
More Exciting News from this Week!
Western Mass. Lawmakers Latest
To Oppose Pipeline
A group of western Massachusetts lawmakers have joined together in opposition to a proposed natural gas pipeline that would cut across the state.
Kinder Morgan’s proposal includes a total of 346 miles of new 36-inch pipeline including loops along existing pipelines. With route selection and public outreach ongoing, the Tennessee Gas Pipeline Northeast Energy Direct Project would carry fracked gas from Pennsylvania through New York to Dracut, Massachusetts. The formerly named Northeast Expansion Project would be partially paid for by an electricity ratepayer increase supported by the six New England governors.
State Senator Ben Downing of Pittsfield joined fellow Democrats and state representatives Gailanne Cariddi of North Adams, Smitty Pignatelli of Lenox, Paul Mark of Peru and Stephen Kulik of Worthington in making their opposition clear in a joint statement. Downing says he alone has received about a dozen community resolutions in opposition to the project.
READ MORE ...
3 advisers to Patrick quit amid energy dispute
By David Abel, Boston Globe Staff
July 30, 2014
Three members of an environmental advisory committee for the Patrick administration resigned Monday in protest of policies they say hinder the state’s goal of significantly cutting the greenhouse gases that cause climate change by the end of the decade.
In a letter to officials at the Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs, the members of the Global Warming Solutions Act Implementation Advisory Committee called the administration’s recent policies and support of a controversial energy bill “deeply concerning.”
Environmental advocates on the committee have repeatedly protested the administration’s consideration of a proposal to build a natural gas pipeline across the state, as well as its support for a bill that would require utility companies to buy large amounts of hydroelectric power from Canada.
“These efforts are deeply flawed,” the three members wrote. “They seriously risk undermining the multiple benefits from’’ closing coal-fired plants.
READ MORE ...
Markey and Warren both issue
statements against the pipeline
Boston protesters rally against Kinder Morgan gas pipeline
July 31, 2014
Gov. Patrick, who met with a small group of the protesters later Wednesday, said he remains skeptical about the Kinder Morgan project even as he remains generally open to new natural gas projects.
Other politicians also weighed in.
U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren said in a statement she opposed the current Kinder Morgan proposal, saying the state must upgrade its energy infrastructure in ways that are “consistent with Massachusetts’ commitment to environmental conservation, clean energy, and energy efficiency.”
U.S. Sen. Ed Markey also opposed the pipeline as proposed because it raises “serious questions,” including whether it is too large for the state’s energy needs and could result in the natural gas being exported rather than used locally. And Congressman James McGovern, a Worcester Democrat, said the proposed pipeline route was “irresponsible” because it cuts through environmentally-sensitive lands and local farms.
READ MORE ...
NESCOE Suspends Votes on Tariff Proposals
Aug 1, 2014 by Shanna Cleveland, Conservation Law Foundation
The New England States Committee on Electricity (“NESCOE”), an entity created to carry out the policy directives of the New England governors, had been hurtling down the track towards forcing electric customers to pay for a massive, new natural gas pipeline as well as new transmission projects to import large-scale Canadian hydropower. This morning at the monthly meeting of the voting participants in the New England Power Pool (“NEPOOL”), NESCOE signaled that the train is going to slow down.
In a surprising and welcome move, NESCOE announced at the meeting that it is delaying action on both the gas and electric proposals that it has been pursuing–proposals that have the potential to put billions of customer dollars at risk. NESCOE formally requested that all of the votes that had been scheduled for the proposals be taken off the calendar to allow for a delay of “at least a month.”
READ MORE ...
MA Senator Eileen Donoghue weighs in
August 3, 2014
After a lobbying effort during the Boston Rally, SPCC member Nick Miller received a hopeful response from Groton’s state senator, Eileen Donahue.
"... this expansion would not come without considerable cost. Natural gas, as an energy source, can be relatively costly – and as our dependence grows, dwindling gas deposits could increase costs over the long term. Next, the pipeline, as currently drawn, would cut through 45 municipalities in the Commonwealth, affecting privately-owned properties, conservation land, and property values. Furthermore, this proposal calls into question our commitment to energy efficiency and renewable sources – including wind, solar, and hydropower – and how it could weaken with continued natural gas dependence. Finally, it is imperative to consider the adverse environmental and public health effects of the controversial gas procurement method of hydraulic fracturing. Energy procurement should not come at the cost of deforestation or the pollution of drinking water.
.... I do not support this project and will work closely with my colleagues and all relevant state agencies to make certain that we are doing everything in our power to protect the rights and interests of my constituents."
READ MORE ....
Site updates - Now with pipeline maps
Maps for each town are now up on town pages on No Fracked Gas in Mass. Look for your town here.
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