Nov 08

Four big hearings coming up!

The movement to support the health and safety of communities in this area from harms that would come from new gas infrastructure has had our share of hearings recently, but there are four more coming up really soon — and we want to make sure they’re on your radar!

Tuesday, November 14

The Charles County Appeals Board will hear testimony from the public as to whether to approve a zoning change that would allow Dominion to build a compressor station along the Cove Point Pipeline near Accokeek, Maryland (right on the Charles County/Prince George’s County line). This location is in the middle of a lot of land that has been officially set aside for conservation, is very close to Piscataway Park (managed by the National Park Service), and, most importantly, is surrounded by the homes of people looking to continue to live in the tranquility of their woodland community. Obviously, a compressor station built in this area would irreversibly impact all of this.

This hearing will start at 7 p.m. at the Charles County Government Building, 200 Baltimore St., La Plata, Maryland. It is expressly for people from the public to be heard on this issue. This is also the fourth of five overall hearings, and only people who have already signed up to testify will be allowed to speak. However, if you’re not signed up, please come out and support those who will speak against this compressor station! This zoning exception absolutely should not be granted, and everybody who is in that room will impact the decision of the all-volunteer appeals board!

More information is at www.ampcreeks.org, and there’s a Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/126553324720778/.

Wednesday, November 15

The very next morning, join us in Baltimore as the Public Service Commission (PSC) will hear arguments on whether to approve Dominion’s application to change the biggest state-level permit for its export terminal being built in Cove Point. Dominion and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources’ Power Plant Research Program will argue for the permit change, and AMP Creeks Council will argue against it. This permit change would allow far more pollution into Cove Point’s air and set a precedent for other fracked gas infrastructure projects that it’s OK to lowball impacts to public health during the permit process and just change the permit later.

This hearing will start at 10 a.m. in the PSC hearing room on the 16 floor of 6 St. Paul Street, Baltimore, Maryland. This will be part of the PSC’s regular meeting, and other items will also be on the agenda. Since there have already been two hearings for public comment on this issue, the public won’t be allowed to speak, but the more the commissioners see the hearing room packed with people opposed to this permit change, the more they’ll see the breadth of opposition to Dominion’s request — especially in light of Dominion’s attempts to manufacture an image of public support by making unions require their members to attend previous hearings to try and balance out what is otherwise an overwhelming public opposition to this application.

More information is at www.wearecovepoint.org, and there’s a Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/685796021591050/.

Tuesday, December 12

This is scheduled to be the fifth and last hearing by the Charles County Appeals Board on whether to grant Dominion a special exception to change the zoning and allow it to build a compressor station in Accokeek. This hearing will not allow public testimony. (That will take place on November 14.) At this hearing, AMP Creeks Council will finish its testimony opposing the zoning exception, continuing its string of expert witnesses against the project. After that, Dominion will be allowed rebuttals, and then the Appeals Board is expected to come to a decision on the matter. Please come out and support AMP Creeks’ fight against this compressor station! As AMP Creeks has stated, the organization feels this zoning permit is the best chance to stop this compressor station, so we really need to do all we can to make that happen!

Like the November 14 hearing, this will start at 7 p.m. at the Charles County Government Building, 200 Baltimore St., La Plata, Maryland. More information is at www.ampcreeks.org, and this shares a Facebook event page with the November 14 hearing: https://www.facebook.com/events/126553324720778/.

Tuesday, December 19

The Maryland Department of the Environment will hold a hearing to get public testimony on whether to approve a waterways permit required by the Clean Water Act for a pipeline Transcanada wants to build through the narrow part of Maryland near Hancock and into West Virginia. This pipeline would cross the Potomac River, the C&O Canal and many other bodies of water. The Potomac River, alone, provides drinking water for more than 6 million people.

This will start at 6 p.m. at Hancock Middle/High School, 289 West Main St., Hancock, Maryland. More information is at https://www.facebook.com/NoPotomacPipeline/, and there is a Facebook event page at https://www.facebook.com/events/498027433917323/.

Please make it out to all of these hearings that you can! Your presence really does bolster the fights against these fracked gas infrastructure projects. And please spread this info around to others you know, inviting them on the Facebook event pages and getting the word out as you’re able. We’re all stronger and more effective when we come together!