Copy
Urgent News!
Plainfield Residents Meeting Tonight!
Monday 3/10

Many Plainfield residents have already been approached by Kinder Morgan/TGP, some repeatedly. There is a meeting tonight for townsfolk who want to organize to ban the pipeline from town.
Plainfield Town Hall
Monday, March 10 • 7 pm

Many more upcoming events in other areas listed below. If your town has meetings planned, let us know, we'll spread the news.

A Plea from Stop the Pipeline in NY State
Help Out Our Neighbors and Learn the
FERC Public Comment Process

We've just been in contact with the folks at Stop the Pipeline. They're waging the same battle over in NewYork against the Constitution Pipeline. The Constitution line is slated to bring fracked gas from the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania, though  the southeastern corner of New York to join up with the Hub in Wright, NY, just west of Albany. From there, the gas is slated to end up in Richmond to feed into our proposed lines - the Northeast and Connecticut Expansion.

The Constitution Pipeline is one step ahead of the NE Expansion, in the "Pre-Filing Process" when FERC gathers comments from the public and governmental agencies. Since their pipeline would be the one bringing gas from the Marcellus Shale to our pipeline, they have extended an invitation to us to go to the public meetings with that the gas company is required to hold, often with FERC representatives participating.

Ann Marie from Stop the Pipeline sent this emphatic note:
"I think it would be great for all of you to come to the FERC hearings. You will learn a lot from them, and can comment too. Bring a van of people!

The TGP NE Expansion can be categorized as part of the cumulative impacts of the UNconstitutional  Pipeline (CP). It is a "reasonably foreseeable" consequence because TGP will take gas from this new pipe. Without the CP, TGP NE Expansion can't be built. So all of the impacts that you will experience can be incorporated into comments for the CP - as cumulative impacts.

FERC may try to say the connection is speculative, because Kinder Morgan hasn't filed an application yet, but we can argue otherwise. TGP is out there with maps, trying to survey property.

So don't just come, comment about your project on STP's website. It's easy, and will give all of you direct experience of FERC, and the Army Corps of Engineers."


The dates and times of these meetings are posted on their site. If you decide to go, please share your plan so others can join in and show up in numbers!

Cummington Meeting Review
For those of you who couldn't make it to the meeting in Cummington, we had somewhere in the neighborhood of 150 people, enough to have to open up the library, hallway and balcony. And people came from all over, at least 5 counties, and probably more points east. Afterward, many mingled and connected, so check in regularly to see which groups have banded together and may be taking action in your town.

Bruce from Berkshire Environmental Action Team (BEAT) gave a wide-ranging talk on the economic and environmental ramifications of the pipeline, pointing out that the gas being brought in is not intended for home heating or cooking, but for electricity generation. The pipeline holds no economic or environmental pluses for us, especially at a time when our state is doing so well developing alternative sources and boosting energy efficiency.

Rose from No Fracked Gas in Mass spoke about steps for action and handed out "starter packs" for people looking to organize groups in their town. These are available for free download on the site as well.

Subjects that came up during the question and discussion period were broad, and answers within the group attending ("audience" is far too passive a term to use), were wonderfully informative and wide ranging. We were happy to see Rep. Steve Kulik stand up and describe how he and others in the legislature are hearing what we're saying and taking action by contacting the gas company themselves. He made it clear that they want to work with us.

Among the subjects addressed:
The stages of development of the project
— The recent realization that there are two pipeline projects in MA, the Northeast Expansion AND the "Connecticut Expansion" which would bring a 36" pipeline to run alongside the other two pipelines at the southern part of the state.
— FERC and its role in permitting and determining eminent domain
— The steps the company needs to take in obtaining its certificate and how we can participate as a voice of opposition
Strategies for stopping the permitting process
— Sam Lovejoy spoke about calling our state's environmental agencies, land trusts, conservation commissions and others and seeing how we can use Article 97 to enforce protection of our wetlands, open spaces and forest reserve areas.
— Town resolutions and the possibility of creating ordinance and/or a state wide referendum on banning new pipelines
Support for alternatives
— The expansion of existing programs for energy efficiency so all economic brackets can participate
— The further development not just of big solar and wind projects, but on-site energy generation like rooftop solar, micro-wind, micro-hydro

Read the full review of the meeting here
- including a rundown of the steps the gas company needs to go through to get approved

Petitions Circulating
Since the meeting, I've heard from many individuals who are bringing the petition around to gather signatures. All sheets need to eventually be sent to the gathering point:
No Fracked Gas In Mass
℅ Rosemary Wessel
90 Trow Road
Cummington, MA 01026

We have a volunteer who regularly goes to the State House who offered to bring them when we think we've gathered enough. The online version at MoveOn.org has already garnered over 200 signatures and we have many more that were gathered the during the meeting.

If you want a copy to start circulating to gather signatures, you can download it here and the signature sheets here.

» Read the petition here
» Sign it electronically on MoveOn.org


More Town / Student Groups Organizing
There are other groups meeting in their towns and organizing in their own way.
— Plainfield residents are holding a meeting to organize to ban the pipeline at the Plainfield Town Hall, Monday, March 10, 7 pm
- Ashfield has started a Facebook page (this link will only work for members of Facebook)
- Climate Action Now MA already held a very productive meeting last week. And are starting to co-ordinate with a student who stepped forward to us yesterday to offer student group coordinating skills. They're taking it to the

If your town has meetings and organized action going on, let us know. We're working on setting up pages for someone from each town or student group to edit with news and announcements.

We are hoping that any group who wants to use the No Fracked Gas in Mass name will feel free to do so. The name was chosen carefully to reflect the breadth if impact ACROSS THE STATE. The group of us in Cummington will consider our necessarily local actions to be those of the Hilltown Branch, though we also will continue to facilitate the bringing together of information and news, and supporting other groups the way we have been. If you want to start your own branch with the NFGIM name, or adopt your own name but still work in tandem with us and the other groups in the state, or if you have a long-standing group that wants to organize particular efforts under the NFGIM banner, please feel free to do so. We'd love to someone from each to report in and work on maintaining news of your activities on our site.
NEXT STEPS
Write Letters to the Editor

One takeaway from our big meeting is that there are LOTS of people out there who have been contacted by the gas company who are feeling afraid and kind of alone. Lots who came felt a great sense of relief knowing that others are facing the same threat and even more are working to try to eliminate it. Let everyone in your area know by writing a letter to the editor in your area. If you feel like contacting a local reporter to tell your story - even better. Many are taking interest and like a good lead.

Organizing Volunteers
We've been really heartened by the amount of people checking the little box on the mailing list sign up, offering to volunteer. We're developing a sign up sheet to gather info on what your particular skills and interests are and what your ideas are on what actions need to be taken to stop this pipeline.

We want to break up the expanding list of ideas and next steps out to a much wider group beyond the four of us who started this off. As we saw in the meeting in Cummington, the range of expertise, knowledge and skills among you is far more impressive than our own. Breaking up into focused divisions or task teams will also help us yield better action plans on all fronts of this battle.

Very soon we'll send out a short notice when with the address of the form and our ideas for divisions of volunteer tasks when it's done and jump in wherever you think is a good fit for you - or if you have and idea not suggested, build your own task force and go at it and keep us informed of your progress.

Thanks to all of you for stepping up and speaking out for our fair state, and for the broader environment!

Upcoming Events
They're popping up fast and in numbers so check our Events Page often!

MONDAY – MARCH 10, 2014 – PLAINFIELD
Organizing Meeting for Plainfield Residents
7:00 p.m.
Plainfield Town Hall


TUESDAY – MARCH 11, 2014 – ATHOL
Strategy and Planning Meeting:  How should North Quabbin Energy respond to Tennessee Gas Pipeline Company’s proposed building of a gas pipeline through several No. Quabbin towns?     Sponsored by North Quabbin Energy.
6:30 p.m.
Millers River Environmental Center
100 Main St., Athol MA


WEDNESDAY – March 12, 2014 – WORCESTER
Pipeline Opposition Planning Meeting
5:00pm ­- 6:30pm
Stone Soup, 4 King Street, Worcester
contact: malcolmdbliss@gmail.com


FRIDAY – MARCH 21, 2014 – ATHOL
“Gasland: Part II” – Screening of the 2013 documentary about fracking, followed by a discussion period.
5:30 p.m.
Athol Public Library
568 Main St., Athol, MA
Sponsored by Athol Public Library and No. Quabbin Energy


FRIDAY – March 28, 2014 – ROYALSTON
“Gasland: Part II” – Screening of the 2013 documentary about fracking, followed by a discussion period.
7:00 p.m.
Royalston Town Hall,
94 Athol Road (on the Common), Royalston, MA
Sponsored by Royalston Energy Committee
and Phinehas Newton Library


MONDAY - MARCH 31, 2014 – PITTSFIELD
Presentation and Meeting: Craig Altemose, executive director of the Better Future Project will speak about building a grassroots movement to address climate change. Followed by kick-off meeting of the Berkshire node of 350 Massachusetts – discussion will include the MA fossil fuel divestment bill and the TGP pipeline.
6:30pm
Berkshire Community College, Room K111
1350 West St, Pittsfield, MA


SATURDAY – APRIL 19, 2014 – SANDISFIELD
Pipeline information event, including presentation by Bruce Winn of BEAT (more details to follow).
Sandisfield Arts Center
5 Hammertown Road
Sandisfield, MA


THURSDAY – APRIL 24 – FITCHBURG
Information Night on TGP Project
7:00 p.m.
Colomba Legacy Center
59 Walnut Street, Fitchburg, MA



ACCEPTING DONATIONS
NFGIM is now accepting donations by PayPal or check (or cash if we're meeting in real life), to cover growing operating expenses. We're an all-volunteer organization and until donations at the March 8th meeting, all operating expenses have been out of pocket. The Hilltown Branch has an upcoming project in development to send information about the pipeline to every address in towns the immediate Hilltowns region where the pipeline is most likely to go. If you'd like to help us cover these costs and other logistical expenses, please consider donating - any amount is helpful. Visit our Donate page to see how.

We are proud to have Berkshire Environmental Action Team as our fiscal sponsors (501c(3) ).
 
Join the conversation on Facebook.
If you're on Facebook, feel free to join our Facebook Group and ask if people in your area want to meet and organize. We have more members join every day to connect and share information and ideas.

New to the NoFrackedGas mailing list?
Catch up on previous newsletters:
Issue 1 - Action Report: Steps you can take now!
      February 22, 2014
Issue 2 - Updates from the Front Line
      February 26, 2014
Issue 3 - Act This Week! Contact Your Legislators
      March 3, 2014
Issue 4 - Pipeline Petition Now Collecting Signatures!
      March 10, 2014

Feel free to share newsletter this widely with neighbors and friends and family across the state. If you received it from a friend, feel free to sign up and join the mailing list.
Copyright © 2014 No Fracked Gas in Mass, All rights reserved.


unsubscribe from this list    update subscription preferences 

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp