Tag Archives: Dennis Price

On Earth Day, FERC approved Sabal Trail Albany, GA, and Dunnellon, FL, compressor stations 2020-04-22

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

FERC on Earth Day rubberstamped Sabal Trail pipeline compressor stations in Georgia virus hotspot and Florida location that already leaked

Hahira, Georgia, April 23, 2020 — “What better way to say they don’t care, than to do this on Earth Day?” said Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman, “The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) broke out its rubberstamp during a virus pandemic, ignoring its own process, as well as all the comments and our motion against, to approve turning on two compressor stations, including one in Albany, Georgia, which is the Georgia city worst-affected by the virus, and another at a site near Dunnellon, Florida, which already leaked multiple times even before construction started.”

[Project Location Map]
Project Location Map

Methane from fracking is not more important to push through a Sabal Trail pipeline than the health of local people or even Sabal Trail’s own workers.

Compressor Station from FL 200
Photo: WCJB, of Sabal Trail Dunnellon Compressor Station after leak, 2017-08-11.

Quarterman added, “With the price of oil negative and “natural” gas down 40%, it’s time to ask investors if they want to go down with the fossil fuel ship of fools and time to ask politicians if they want this to be their legacy.”

Only four weeks before the FERC approval letter, FERC opened a comment period on a request by Sabal Trail for six more months to finish these same facilities, in which Sabal Trail cited the virus pandemic as a reason. Contradicting its own request, and during that two-week period, Sabal Trail asked FERC to go ahead and approve turning on both compressor stations, which must involve Sabal Trail workers working during pandemic conditions.

FERC did not even mention that WWALS Watershed Coalition (WWALS) had moved to deny, nor any of the numerous other comments against turning on the compressor stations.

For that comment period, FERC required organizations to file again to be Intervenors, and only organizations that were already Intervenors on the process of the underlying FERC docket could do that. The only one to do that was Suwannee Riverkeeper for WWALS (see PDF). WWALS also filed a motion to halt Sabal Trail’s Phase II (which is mostly these two compressor stations), to deny Sabal Trail’s request to turn the compressor stations on, and to invoke penalties for already being two years late (see PDF). WWALS reasons to deny included repeated previous leaks at the Dunnellon Compressor Station of hazardous Mercaptan odorant, as well as leaks of methane at the Hildreth Compressor Station in Suwannee County, Florida, plus sinkholes at the Flint River near the Albany Compressor Station, the virus pandemic, and Sabal Trail gas going to private profit through Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) export, making a mockery of local landowners having to give up easements through federal eminent domain supposedly for the public good of the United States.

WWALS also noted that the only “justification” for Sabal Trail was alleged “market need,” and there was none any more, since oil and gas prices had dropped through the floor. Since then, oil prices actually went negative for the first time in history, and natural gas prices are down more than 40% from only six months ago.

FERC did not address the concerns raised by Our Santa Fe River (OSFR) about leaks, breach of commitment, and endangering commmunities Continue reading

PR: Florida man wins Suwannee Riverkeeper kayak raffle drawing at Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Hahira, Georgia, December 13, 2017 — People got kayak raffle tickets for three months at festivals from Alapaha, Georgia to Live Oak, Florida, and online, until the drawing at a Suwannee Riverkeeper outing Sunday at the top of the Suwannee River in the Okefenokee Swamp. The lucky winner of a kayak donated by Malibu Kayaks is Chris Newton from the Atlantic coast of Florida. “No way!” he said.

At Stephen C. Foster State Park, Fargo, Georgia, Gretchen Quarterman, Acting Executive Director for WWALS Watershed Coalition, said:

“These are all the tickets that we sold. And these are the ones that Shirley [Kokidko, WWALS board member] sold. These are the ones that came from Phil [Hubbard, WWALS board member of Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia]. These are the ones that came from Hulaween [Live Oak, Suwannee County, Florida]. These are the ones that came from Skillet Fest [Quitman, Brooks County, Georgia, suggested by WWALS member John Horton of Quitman and Suwannee, Dixie County, Florida] ….”

Gretchen Quarterman assembles the tickets at WWALS kayak raffle drawing 2017-12-10

WWALS board member Shirley Kokidko of Pearson, Atkinson County, Georgia, had the video camera at Continue reading

Kayak raffle winner drawn at Okefenokee Suwannee River Outing 2017-12-10

WWALS Acting Executive Director Gretchen Quarterman said:

These are all the tickets that we sold. And these are the ones that Shirley sold. These are the ones that came from Phil. These are the ones that came from Hulaween. These are the ones that came from Skillet Fest….

Look, a bird!

WWALS kayak raffle drawing 2017-12-10

Shirley Kokidko at the WWALS Okefenokee Outing, Sunday, December 10, 2017, refocused the camera on the proceedings. Then more ticket sources: Continue reading

Videos: NFRWSP Plan passed at joint SRWMD-SJRWMD Board Meeting 2017-01-17

Pretty full The playwright could have added a bit more suspense. After listening to almost two dozen public comments, many recommending tabling the North Florida Regional Water Supply Plan (NFRWSP) or a moratorium on new water withdrawal permits, the boards of the Suwannee River Water Management District and the St Johns River Water Management District each voted unanimously to approve.

Here are WWALS videos of each of the speakers, with a few notes, followed by video playlist of the whole thing. Continue reading

SRWMD responds about NFRWSP; come to Alachua Tuesday 2017-01-17

SRWMD did post responses to comments from WWALS and others on the North Florida Regional Water Supply Plan (NFRWSP). A week before the planned NFRWSP adoption, same as for the agenda for the joint SRWMD-SJRWMD meeting next Tuesday in Alachua. After OSFR and WWALS posted critical blog posts, SRWMD Executive Director Noah Valenstein sent us and others an offer to meet this Friday in Live Oak to discuss. While many (including me), thanked him for his collegial offer, nobody took him up on it. See you in Alachua Tuesday (facebook event).

Below are Noah Valenstein’s letter and my response. Continue reading

North Florida Regional Water Supply Plan on agenda for joint SRWMD-SJRWMD meeting 2017-01-17

Update 2017-01-19: Videos: NFRWSP Plan passed at joint SRWMD-SJRWMD Board Meeting 2017-01-17.

Update 2017-01-12: SRWMD did post responses to comments on the NFRWSP: they posted them a week in advance of planned adoption. Come on down to Alachua Tuesday!

Next week in Alachua without further public meetings or response to those who wrote in, SRWMD and SJRWMD plan to approve the North Florida Regional Water Supply Plan (NFRWSP), as the only item on the agenda.

Agenda

When: 11AM Tuesday 17 January 2017

Where: 15100 NW 142nd Terrace, Alachua, FL 32615

Event: facebook

WWALS never got a response to our letter about the NFRWSP, not about less water withdrawal, nor about better modeling and data, nor about more water retention, nor specifically about ditching the Rube Goldberg Falling Creek Aquifer Recharge Project for Dennis Price P.G.’s more cost-effective solution, nor with any mention of participation from farther afield in Florida nor in Georgia, for that matter.

The language of the memorandum accompanying the agenda is rather Orwellian:

The NFRWSP has identified sufficient sources of water to meet the needs of the environment and the projected demands through 2035.

That sounds like the environment is making projected demands. Actually, the maps in the NFRWSP are pretty clear that Jacksonville is making the most demands for water, along with other cities and corporate agriculture, and the plan would take from the environment, mostly from the Suwannee River Basin, to get that water.

Our Santa Fe River sums it up pretty well: Continue reading

Sabal Trail violations FDEP assured us would not happen are happening

Already under the Withlacoochee River in Georgia there’s been a frac-out and a sinkhole at a drilling site, upstream from the Suwannee River in Florida, under which FDEP told us it couldn’t happen:

Lisa Prather, sole FDEP witness Well, the Suwannee River crossing doesn’t, in fact, have any impacts to an outstanding Florida water….”

“Well, any work within, or could have adverse effects on OFW, is considered. In this case, we determine that there would be no impacts to the OFW.

Apparently not only FDEP’s sole witness Lisa Prather believed Sabal Trail; according to a video yesterday by Cody Suggs at the Suwannee River, Sabal Trail’s own workers seem to believe their company’s propaganda.

Much more about WWALS v Sabal Trail & FDEP is on the WWALS website, including videos and transcripts of the landowners who also tried to warn FDEP that sinkholes happen like they already have including under at least two public roads in Suwannee County, Florida. And more about what already happened is on the WWALS website, plus things you can do to stop this $3 billion dollar fracked methane boondoggle.

For example, you may want to ask the permitting agencies some of the questions WWALS asked, including this one:

Which of FERC, FDEP, GA-EPD, USACE, SRWMD are working to protect the health, welfare and safety of the communities surrounding this pipeline and how are they doing that?

Given that I asked them for a prompt answer and two weeks later have gotten no answer at all, it sure looks like we the people will have to find and report violations and use other methods to stop this pipeline.

The transcript questions quoted below are Continue reading

Pictures: Alapaha and Dead River Sinks 2016-11-06

the Alapaha River sink, 30.5855189, -83.0528064 A very scenic hike to some of the most unusual geological features in all of Florida: the Alapaha River Sink and the Dead River Sink. We walked over beds of 50-million-year-old fossilized oysters, above all our drinking water in the Floridan Aquifer. See many pictures and a few videos of the sights, and a google map of the sites.

Practicing Geologist Dennis Price led us by the scenic route on this hike, explaining te karst geology on display, which underlies all of north Florida and south Georgia, containing our drinking water in the Floridan Aquifer. Dennis and hike organizer Chris Mericle recommend making this very unusual area a state park.

The Alapaha River goes underground here unless it has a lot of water, which usually this time of year and right now it does not.

Dont fall into the Devils Den,

Until recently nobody knew for sure Continue reading

Hike to Dead River Sink from Alapaha River 2016-11-06

An easy hike following Alapaha River as it flows into the Dead River and disappears into the Dead River Sink: you don’t see this just anywhere!.

Update 2016-10-15: Be aware the path does get steep and rough towards the sink, and there are mosquitoes and chiggers.

Bring water, a snack, and bug repellent.

No boat required. Really: you don’t want to try to boat up the Dead River. But you do want to see the Dead River Sink.

When: 10AM Saturday November 6th 2016

Duration: 2-3 hours

Where: Jennings Bluff Landing, 30.579864, -83.039308

Event: facebook, meetup.

This outing is Free! But we encourage you to join WWALS today to support our fun outings and important work: /donations/. Continue reading

Push to block Sabal Trail gas pipeline looks to enlist U.S. Army Corps of Engineers –Florida Bulldog

Again tying Florida Governor Rick Scott into the Sabal Trail fracked methane pipeline invasion, Florida Bulldog reports about last month’s elected official hike at the Suwannee River, Pastured Life, Peurrung, Hildreth Compressor Station but could get no response from hike attendee Ted Yoho FL-03. And FL Bulldog confirmed that as of last week the Corps had not responded to Sanford Bishop GA-02.

Jake Galvin and Dan Christensen, Florida Bulldog, 28 June 2016, Push to block Sabal Trail gas pipeline looks to enlist U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Continue reading