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Guest Post from PRESERVE CRAIG  -  Sustaining the Quality of Life We Value


Preserve Craig will have a booth at the 35th Annual Craig County Fall Festival this Saturday, October 14th. We’ll be in front of the Preserve Craig office on Main Street. Stop by and chat. We have lots to share, including some good news, as well as Stop the Pipeline T-Shirts, Yard Signs, bottled mountain spring water and more.   

There are three common misconceptions about the Mountain Valley Pipeline:

  1. Why would I care about the Mountain Valley Pipeline? After all, the proposed new route only goes through an edge of Craig County way down Route 42 near the Giles County line. What’s the big deal?  


  1. Do you really think it can be stopped? Big corporate money and political pull is behind this project and they usually get their way when they want to do something so why are you fighting it? Who cares what folks here in the mountains think.  


  1. Is there really anything I can do that would make a difference? The politicians and the regulators don’t care what the public wants or what folks here in the mountains think so how could we possibly stop a multi-billion-dollar project like this?


We’ll be talking about all of these questions this Saturday at our booth, and look forward to hearing your thoughts on these issues. In the meantime, here is some facts and perspectives on these questions, representing the collective thoughts of hundreds of people who are working to stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) from all over the area.    

The short answer to all three questions is that this project will affect everyone, it can be stopped, but it will take a continuing concerted effort by the public.  


HOW WILL THE MOUNTAIN VALLEY PIPELINE HARM THOSE OF US NOT ON ITS PATH?

  • We risk losing our most valuable resource, our clean water, which is all connected by a complex underground reservoir of rivers running through the karst geology here in Craig.  
  • It would set a devastating precedent by using eminent domain to unconstitutionally take property from private citizens, our neighbors and friends, for corporate profits.
  • There are other massive pipelines on the drawing boards that would come next, including one by the Williams Company that is proposed to go through Craig County just north of New Castle.
  • This project is not needed but the government is refusing to do a systematic evaluation of all the gas project and look at them programmatically.
  • If built, MVP would violate every rule that the Forest Service, Virginia, and West Virginia have established limiting construction and erosion on steep slopes.
  • This would be the largest project ever built across our mountains, and, by their own admission, would   cause massive erosion and sediment every year, damaging our creeks, rivers, fish and wildlife.
  • It would create a perfect path for invasive plant species to migrate and cause economic harm to our area.
  • It would outgas all along the route and at the compressor stations, dirtying our air.
  • The massive swath across our mountains and forests would forever damage our views, our tourism, and our way of life.

CAN MVP BE STOPPED FROM BEING BUILT?

  • We have successfully delayed the project by one entire year already.  Their original plan was to be under construction now, but they still have none of the required approvals from any of the five federal and state agencies involved, or any of the County permits that will be required.
  • We have a strong case to show that any permits that may be issued for this project will violate federal and state laws, regulations and procedures, much less be in direct opposition to the US and Virginia Constitution.
  • The economic support for this project is deteriorating.   The investors and bankers are concerned.
  • The price of gas has dropped by more than half since the project was first conceived and renewable energy is becoming competitive with fracked gas.
  • The managing partner for the project, EQT, is facing a range of legal problems and has plead guilty to several environmental crimes.
  • EQT and MVP have submitted false and inaccurate information and have not been forthcoming about the truth. 
  • Several other recent court decisions lay the foundation for our victory when we appeal any of the permits that may be issued.  
  • A lot of organizations and people here and nationally, like the Appalachian Trail Commission, the Wilderness Society, and the NRDC are opposing this project and are ready to fight it.   
  • In short, the wind is at our backs and we are winning, but we need the support and the will to keep fighting.


WHAT CAN EACH OF US DO TO HELP PROTECT CRAIG COUNTY?

Come on by our booth to find out.  If you can’t make it, give us a call or email, check out our website, and keep an eye out for more information to follow. More information on these efforts and what you can do to participate can be found at the Preserve Craig website.   

Preserve Craig, Inc. is a 501C3 nonprofit volunteer public charity formed in 1991 using volunteers and donations to protect our natural, historical, and cultural resources.  Tax-deductible donations are welcome online at www.preservecraig.org  or by mail to: Preserve Craig, Inc., PO Box 730, New Castle, VA. 24127.


Preserve Giles County Public Forum

House of Delegates 12th District 2017 Election: Joseph Yost and Chris Hurst.

Sponsored by Preserve Giles County

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

7:00 PM

Pearisburg Community Center

1410 Wenonah Ave, Pearisburg, VA


Facebook Event Page





Preserve Giles County is a citizens group organized to oppose the MVP pipeline, preserve our natural heritage, property rights and to empower Giles citizens in the electoral process.


This forum is a public service. PGC does not take stands for or against any candidate.     


The forum is an informal informational meeting, allowing the candidates to educate voters on issues they deem important and their stands on those issues, and to permit local citizens to ask questions, express concerns and provide information to candidates.

The candidates are welcome to discuss issues of importance to them. Below is a list of issues PGC believe are important to the Commonwealth and southwest Virginia.     

Legislative Issues  


  1. Interstate gas pipelines in Virginia

  2. Unique threat posed by the MVP to our region

  3. The DEQ Section 401 water quality review for the MVP  

  4. Revised survey law to replace Virginia Code Ann § 56-49.01(Download below.)

  5. The outsized role of large energy corporations in Virginia politics

  6. Virginia’s Alternative Energy Portfolio

  7. Hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling in Virginia

  8. Need for an abandoned pipeline law

  9. Virginia’s preparations for climate change

Format:

The moderator will introduce the forum, the candidates, the rules of the forum and guide discussion.

The meeting is divided into two one-hour segments: one for candidates’ opening remarks and one for audience participation. At the end of these sessions, PGC will provide a brief (1/2 hour) social for all those who have attended. Beverages and bake goods will be served.

Rules:
First Segment (approximately one hour): Candidates will be introduced. Then each candidate will address several issues he/she is running on, in addition to at least two issues of concern to PGC from a list (i.e., see above) that will be presented to the candidates in advance of the forum. Candidates will address their comments directly to the audience. This is not a debate. Exchanges between the candidates will be discouraged by the moderator.

The time limit for each candidate to make his/her opening remarks is 20 minutes.

Second Segment (approximately one-hour): The moderator will read questions submitted in writing during the first segment or allow questions from the floor by raised hands. One question will be permitted per individual (with one follow-up for purposes of clarification) until all members of the audience, who so wish, have had the opportunity to address the candidates.


Questions may be directed to one or more candidates, although both candidates will have the opportunity to respond. The time limit for candidate response per question is 2 minutes.


The moderator will give preference to Giles residents. Each person asking a question will be asked to first state their own name and address. Citizens’ remarks are limited to one minute and must end in a question.



The Threat To Giles County


"Our natural heritage, endangered species, aquifers (the primary source of our farm and residential water), safety from catastrophe like the 2010 San Bruno gas pipeline explosion, peace of mind, property values and property rights are all at risk." -Rick Shingles, PGC Coordinator.

Read more at: The Peoples Climate March is Red, White, and Blue.

Congratulations to the winners of our drawing prizes!

First Prize (Bear Foot Cabin Retreat): Brian Murphy
Second Prize (Advantage Ranch Horse Camp): Don Jones
Third Prize (Snow Ridge, Brush Mountain painting): Becky Farnham

Thank you to all who contributed to our fundraiser and to the purveyors of our great prizes.

Larry Keel Experience to Play Newport Rec Center Benefit Concert for PGC

With Special Guests Blue Mule

Tickets available at: Brown Paper Tickets



KASTING GEOLOGIC HAZARD REPORT TO BE RELEASED TODAY, JULY 7, 2016

The Kastning Report focuses on the Central Appalachian Region and specifically on geological hazards along the segment of MVP’s current preferred route from Monroe County, West Virginia to Roanoke County, Virginia - all of which are part of a geologic region of ridges and valleys in karst terrain. For the most part it does not address alternative routes; nor does it attempt to treat all impacted counties thoroughly or equally.  On the basis of detailed facts, published (and unpublished) research and sound logic, it concludes that the entire region should be a “No Build” zone.

(Full report will be available in PDF from the link below.)

Geologic Hazards in the Karst Regions of Virginia and West Virginia, Investigations and Analysis Concerning the Proposed Mountain Valley Gas Pipeline by Dr. Ernst Kastning, Ph.D., P.G.


KEY-LOG ECONOMICS RELEASES STUDY DETAILING TRUE COSTS OF MVP

Mountain Valley Pipeline Would Impose $Billions in Costs on Local People, Communities, According to New Research

 

Land value, natural benefits, and economic development will suffer short- and long- term losses

 

A new study by Charlottesville-based Key-Log Economics (“Economic Costs of the Mountain Valley Pipeline: Effects on Property Value, Ecosystem Services, and Economic Development in Virginia and West Virginia”) estimates the total cost to an eight-county region in southern West Virginia and southwest Virginia to $8.0 to $8.9 billion, in present value terms. That includes between $65.1 and $135.5 million in the short term as construction strips forest and other productive land bear, and as private property values take a hit due to the dangers and inconvenience of living near the MVP route.  It also includes $119.1 to $130.8 million each and every year after construction due to permanent changes in land cover, lost property tax revenues, and dampened economic growth in key sectors. 

A coalition of community groups and organizations from the eight counties (Greenbrier, Monroe and Summers in West Virginia, and Giles, Craig, Montgomery, Roanoke and Franklin in Virginia) commissioned the independent research to ensure that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) would have more comprehensive and robust estimates of economic effects that are typically discounted or ignored in pipeline approval processes. The coalition had previously debunked exaggerated claims that the MVP would provide benefits in the form of jobs and income in the region, and its new report provides at least a piece of the essential cost side of the benefit-cost evaluation.

“FERC’s procedures and its track record show a blatant disregard for established economic principles as well as clear evidence that pipelines reduce property values, discourage business development, and diminish the capacity of the natural environment to provide clean water, beautiful scenery, and other valuable services to people,” said the study’s lead author, Dr. Spencer Phillips.

 

Central findings of the Key-Log Economics report are that:

       One-time costs (lost property value and lost ecosystem service value during construction) would total in the range of $65.1 to $135.5 million.

       Annual costs (costs that recur year after year) would range from $119.1 to $130.8 million.

       Present discounted value of all future annual costs (discounted at 1.5%): $7.9 to $8.7 billion.

       One-time costs plus the discounted value of all future annual costs: $8.0 to $8.9 billion.

       Purported financial benefits to local governments are based on exaggerated MVP economic benefits claims.

       The need for the Mountain Valley Pipeline is not supported by economic benefits for impacted communities.

 

“Only if we count all of these costs (plus others our study did not get to, like the cost of damage to roads during construction or of heightened emergency response capacity after), weigh the full cost against reasonable estimates of societal benefits, and then ensure that the pipeline’s owners pay the full of the pipeline, could we possibly say that the MVP is a good idea, economically,” said Phillips.

 

Kirk Bowers of the Virginia Chapter of the Sierra Club adds that “Based on a comparison of even the exaggerated benefit estimates put out by the MVP’s backers with these very conservative cost estimates, it is hard to see this pipeline being worth it for the region.”

 

Read the complete Key-Log Economics report.


MVP RESISTANCE ROAD TRIP ARRIVES IN NEWPORT

This May 15-21, students from all across Virginia will be driving along the proposed route of the pipeline to see the effects of natural gas infrastructure first hand and to get to know the people it will be impacting.

Join us Tuesday May 17th as we welcome the Virginia Student Environmental Coalition to Newport for a rally and community potluck dinner. Dinner will start at 6:00. Please arrive at 4:00 PM to show support and bring a dish to share! FB event:

https://www.facebook.com/events/696005203872810/


US FOREST SERVICE RESPONDS TO MOUNTAIN VALLEY PIPELINE PROJECT  - DOWNLOAD AND READ the document from the USFS containing comments on the MVP's resource reports.

PGC FUNDRAISER - on Friday, November 13, the Giles Little Theater presents their production of the Pulitzer Prize Winning play Trifles by Susan Glaspell. This show will be a special benefit performance for Preserve Giles County:


You can now MAKE A DONATION to Preserve Giles County online.

Reason For Caution: Mountain Valley Pipeline Economic Studies Overestimates Benefits, Downplays Costs by Spencer Phillips, PhD, Key-Log Economics (also see OFFICIAL PRESS RELEASE DOCUMENT).

READ Preserve Giles' leader Rick Shingles' commentary, 'A False Choice For Virginia,' publishing in the Sunday 10/4 edition of the Roanoke Times.

READ Mountain Valley Pipeline's economic benefits study flawed, opponents say' by Duncan Adams, published in the Roanoke Times Tuesday, 10/6.

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Letter To Landowners

Code Of Virginia 56-49.01 - Natural gas companies; right of entry upon property.

Redacted Lawsuit - Giles County Complaint 6-17-2015

READ Preserve Giles member Paul Washburn's comments to FERC about the MVP's adverse effects on Giles County water resources  ... also, the companion Environmental Impact Study can be accessed HERE.

READ Greater Newport Rural Historic District Committee's comments to FERC about the proposed pipeline route.

THERE IS NOTHING NATURAL NOR CLEAN ABOUT FRACKED GAS -  read this Roanoke Times commentary by Preserve Giles Chairman Richard Shingles on the RT Website or download the PDF.


MVP Project Update - click to read the report filed on March 27. 


RALLY IN THE VALLEY!

The Opposition tot he Mountain Valley Pipeline Rally held Saturday, March 21st at Noon at the Corner of North Main Street and College Avenue was a great success! Students and community members of the Blacksburg and New River Valley area came together in resistance to this project which threatens the health and integrity of our social and environmental well-being. Special thanks to Pete French for having us on the radio that morning to talk about the rally and the pipeline issues.

Sponsored by the Virginia Chapter of the Sierra Club, New River Valley Sierra Club, Preserve the NRV, Preserve Montgomery County, Preserve Giles County, Virginians for Equality and Sensible Laws, Organizing for Action, Mothers Against Pipelines, and the Environmental Coalition at VT.


FERC LETTER WRITING GUIDELINES AND RESOURCES - DOWNLOAD a quick how-to guide for writing effective letters to FERC. Also visit the 'Want To Know More?' area of the site to learn more about gas pipelines, fracking, and the danger it represents for Giles County, Virginia, the United States and the Earth.

IT'S A BIG DEAL!!: Read the Feb. 2, 2015 Roanoke Times Geller-Shingles commentary 'It's A Big Deal.' This article contains reasoned responses to the mistaken claims of the MVP's benign nature.

MARCH 8 FUNDRAISER FEATURING SARAH GUTHRIE AND JOHNNY IRION!!!! Our fundraiser at the Newport Recreation Center was a huge success!! It was a great evening of community and coming together, and we are honored to have the Woody Guthrie legacy of social justice on our side. Stay tuned for more upcoming events including film screenings, concerts, information sessions and letter writing workshops, this spring.





PIPELINE VIDEO SERIES

Check out the Pipeline Video Series produced by Lucid Media. The series documents our fight against the Mountain Valley Pipeline. Check out the trailer below and VIEW ALL EPISODES ONLINE!

Pipeline VIdeo Series




PRESERVE GILES COUNTY MISSION STATEMENT: Preserve Giles County is a citizens group organized to oppose interstate gas pipelines, and the hydraulic fracturing they sustain, and to preserve our natural heritage and the way of life it provides. We exist to empower citizens of our county, consistent with the principles of environmental democracy. We commit ourselves to pursue these goals by utilizing non-violent direct action, working with elected officials, and in coalition with other communities and environmental defense organizations.

Use the menu links on the left of the page to navigate the site, and to learn about how the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline could affect Giles County. 

Also visit PreserveTheNRV (linked on the menu to your left) for daily updates on pipeline news, video, related state and federal legislation, opposition activity around Virginia, and other related media.