Update on High Voltage Power Line Protest

I received this email yesterday regarding the proposed high voltage power lines.

Things are looking up.

“I just came from the Calhoun County Commission meeting.  The
Commissioners unanimously passed our resolution as submitted.  They all
appeared to support us without reservation, based on their comments and
questions.  There was no hesitation in the vote.  The county development
specialist also reported that the state development board, on which she
sits, was unable to come to any conclusion about the line because the
board was so divided.  They had decided to take no position on PATH as a
result.  She said that she had never seen such a hotly debated topic at
their meeting.

I will be giving the County Clerk information about the PSC for him to
submit a letter to the PATH case.

Bill”

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Update – Fighting Against the Destruction of WV

The Rally against the high voltage power lines at the Arnoldsburg Community Building on October 17 was a huge success. Approximately 70 people attended. Altho the Bluegrass Band was a no-show, the alloted time was taken up with an informative power point presentation by members of CAP from Mon and Tucker Counties, an enthusiastic speaker from the Sierra Club who actually handed out paper, addressed and stamped envelopes, and pens, so that people could write to the Governor about their concerns on the spot. A short but lively speach was given by Steve Gormezano, a Roane County citizen whose land the power lines could be very near. His ending remark of “We CAN stop this thing” brought much applause.

The Mountain Party candidate for Governor, Jesse Johnson, was also on scene and spoke at length about the alternatives to supporting this power line. He is the only candidate for governor who is actively against the power lines and mountaintop removal, promoting instead sustainable energy produced by wind, hydroelectric, biomass, geothermal and solar energy.

Calhoun County Commissioner, Bob Weaver, expressed that the Commission would entertain the idea of an anti-power line resolution for the county. At this time, several citizens from the Roane/Calhoun/Gilmer areas, with lots of help from Bill Howley (calhounpowerline.wordpress.com), are putting the finishing touches on a proper resolution to be brought before the County Commission.

Bill Howley states that “Tucker, Hardy, Jefferson Counties all have copies of their resolutions filed with the WV PSC.  They are all available on the PSC Web site under the PATH case documents.  Morgan County’s Commission has passed a resolution opposing the line.  Berkeley County is in the process of passing a resolution, because one commissioner didn’t like the wording of the proposed resolution.  So in the near future there will be five counties on record as opposed to PATH.”

Here is an exclusive sneak preview of the resolution as it now stands:

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WHEREAS, the members of the Calhoun County Commission have been elected
to serve and protect the collective interest of citizens of Calhoun
County, WV, and

WHEREAS, Allegheny Energy (Allegheny) and American Electric Power (AEP)
have proposed the Potomac Appalachian Transmission Highline 765 KV
electrical transmission line to pass through Calhoun County, WV, and

WHEREAS, the PATH project is intended to deliver electricity to the
Northeastern Corridor of the United States with relatively little or no
benefit to West Virginia customers of either Allegheny or AEP, and

WHEREAS, the rights of way required by the PATH line will be a minimum
of 200 feet in width and will significantly damage and restrict land use
and value along the entire Calhoun County section of the line, and

WHEREAS, the PATH is designed to transmit electricity from existing and
new coal-fired power plants and will reduce the need for advanced
natural gas-fired generating plants both in West Virginia and in the
Northeast Corridor causing direct economic harm to Calhoun County’s
natural gas industry, and

WHEREAS, under policies of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission,
Allegheny Energy is allowed to include construction and operating costs
of the PATH line in electric rate increases for its customers in Calhoun
County, who will receive no benefit from the line, and

WHEREAS, scientific and medical research has demonstrated adverse health
effects in humans and wildlife from chemical herbicides used to maintain
rights-of-way and electrical magnetic fields generated by the line
itself, and

WHEREAS,  the West Virginia Department of Natural Resources has
documented high levels of mercury in the fish in our state the
construction of new coal-fired power plants to feed the PATH will
destroy a major state resource and pose additional health risks to the
citizens of Calhoun County and the state as a whole, and

WHEREAS, the US Department of Energy has announced that Calhoun County
lies within the National Interest Electric Transmission Corridor (NIETC)
which would eliminate the need for Allegheny Energy and American
Electric Power to perform an environmental impact study concerning the
impact of the PATH line on the environment and people of Calhoun County,
and this same NIETC designation would allow the power companies to seize
the property of Calhoun County citizens by federal eminent domain
powers, and

WHEREAS, a secure, reliable and economically efficient electrical power
system can only be assured by a decentralized power grid fed by a wide
range diverse energy sources, not by huge transmission lines fed by a
few large generating plants burning primarily coal, and

WHEREAS, by making electrical rates lower in the Northeast Corridor and
adding to increased rates in West Virginia, the PATH line will reduce
West Virginia’s attractiveness for businesses seeking to locate in the
state because of our lower cost electricity, and

WHEREAS, major programs to reduce electricity demand and create local
power generating capacity in many states in the Northeast Corridor, most
recently the state of New Jersey, makes PATH unnecessary for its stated
purpose, and

WHEREAS, PATH is an inefficient use of resources, because large amounts
of electricity on large transmission lines are lost when electricity is
transmitted over hundreds of miles, and

WHEREAS, it is likely that AEP will construct up to four new coal-fired
generating plants in West Virginia and eastern Ohio to feed PATH,
increasing the destruction of West Virginia streams, communities and
land from mountaintop removal coal mining and generating large amounts
of new air pollution that will harm the health of Calhoun County
citizens living downwind of these plants,

WHEREAS, the $1.8 billion proposed in PATH construction costs could be
better invested in improving the reliability and security of local West
Virginia electrical infrastructure and more diverse and secure
generating capacity in the state, and

WHEREAS, the proposed PATH project does not demonstrate a need to
originate or pass through West Virginia,

NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Calhoun County Commission does
hereby oppose the construction of the PATH within the boundaries of
Calhoun County, WV, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Calhoun County Commission expresses its
support for and agreement with other counties in West Virginia that
oppose the construction of PATH within their boundaries.

——————————————–

At this time the most important thing you can do to help is to educate everyone you know. Many people at this point in time are still totally unaware of this issue. The other thing to do right now is to flood the Governors office and the PSC office with complaints.

More People Protesting

From VA to MD, people are protesting what has to be one of the biggest money making scams by energy corporations going on in the eastern US. Their agenda includes new power lines going thru WV, power lines going thru PA, power lines thru MD, Mountaintop removal in WV, VA, and Kentucky. New coal fired plants being built in VA.

The family of people who see thru this corporate farce is growing all up and down the Appalachians.

Here is a little story from VA…..

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DUFFIELD, Va. – Nearly two dozen supporters were still waiting late Monday for the release of 11 protesters who were arrested that morning at a power plant construction site outside St. Paul, Va.

By 10 p.m., they had been waiting for their release for about five hours.

Since the arrests, more charges were added to those announced at the protest site.

Lt. Todd Thompson, shift supervisor at Southwest Virginia Regional Jail in Duffield, said all 11 were charged with trespassing, unlawful assembly and resisting arrest. Two, Hannah Morgan and Kathleen Ruth, were also each charged with 11 counts of inciting a riot. Their bond was set at $5,000 each. Bond for the others was set at $2,000 each.

By 6 a.m. Monday, 10 of the protesters had locked themselves in place to block entrances to the site, two to gates and eight with their arms locked inside steel drums that stretched across a construction entrance to the Virginia City Hybrid Energy Center, which Dominion Virginia Power is building on the site.

The 11th person, who was not locked to anything, said she was there “to mediate for a safe and smooth process.”

“We’re here to promote a better future, in solidarity with the people of Appalachia who … are looking for sustainable jobs that are still going to be around when coal runs out,” said Kate Lally, 20, of Baltimore, Md., as she sat locked to a steel drum.

Although no one group organized the protest, participants came from across the country. Among them were members of the Rainforest Action Network, Blue Ridge Earth First, Mountain Justice, Asheville Rising Tide and Students for a Democratic Society, as well as local activists.

Two of the drums also held solar panels, which lit up a banner reading, “Renewable jobs to renew Appalachia.” The protesters’ T-shirts read, “Today’s destruction is not tomorrow’s prosperity.”

The plant opponents said they sought to stop construction of the plant, which began this summer after a long, controversial permitting process.

“This has been one of many tactics being used, only after going through all the process to no avail,” said Hannah Morgan, 20, of Appalachia, Va., as she sat locked to two of the drums early Monday.

Morgan said the plant will be one of the nation’s dirtiest, and that protesters had asked Dominion to stop construction “for our safety today, but for the safety of the community and the region at large.”

Other opponents are in the midst of legal challenges to the granting of air permits for the plant, which will burn wood and waste coal as well as run-of-mine coal.

“Dominion respects peaceful protest,” said Dan Genest, spokesman for Dominion. “However, we do not condone illegal acts such as protestors trespassing on our property, chaining themselves to our fences and blocking roads that could prevent our employees and contractors from coming to work.”

Genest said the company’s plans are to bring the plant online in 2012 regardless of any protests.

Read the rest of the article HERE.

Sneak Preview of Powerline Rally Fliers

These are printable. Click on them to see full size.

Breaking News – Update On Calhoun County Power Line Rally

Plans for the musical/educational rally against proposed high voltage power lines, scheduled for October 17th at the Arnoldsburg Community Building, are being finalized. Starting at 7:00pm, live bluegrass music featuring Calhoun County’s John Truman will be provided. Representatives from the WV Sierra Club and the Concerned Citizen’s Coalition from Roane County will be there to speak and answer questions. Also, representatives from CAP (Citizens Against PATH) in Tucker County will do a power point presentation.  The evening will finish up with some good live local rock music. Something for everyone, the entire event is FREE to the public.

The proposed power lines are slated to run thru West Virginia, and of particular interest, thru Roane, CALHOUN, and Gilmer Counties. Along with these lines, WV is also expected to be future home to several more coal-to-electric plants like John Amos, and approximately 27000 more acres of proposed mountaintop removal. The majority of extra electric power goes to big cities up north…

Come to the rally for good entertainment, get educated about the issues regarding the power lines, learn what others are doing. Lets set a new precedent. Let our officials know we want to support GREEN and renewable energy, not more of the same. See you there.

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Check out THIS for more power line info.