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91-year Old Scientist and Great-Grandmother Blockade with Six Others in Valentine’s Day-themed Action While 20 Others Rally Against Gas Storage at Seneca Lake

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Feb 152016
 

91-year Old Scientist and Great-Grandmother Blockade with Six Others in Valentine’s Day-themed Action While 20 Others Rally Against Gas Storage at Seneca Lake

 

Watkins Glen, NY –  In an act of civil disobedience, seven Finger Lakes residents formed a human chain across the north and south entrances of Crestwood Midstream, blocking all traffic from leaving and entering the facility this morning. Twenty other opponents of gas storage in the Seneca Lake salt caverns rallied along the side of the highway, reading poetry, singing love songs, and sharing chocolates and roses in a Valentine’s Day-styled protest.

Among those braving frigid temperatures to risk arrest was 91-year-old Martha Ferger of Dryden in Tompkins County.

Ferger, who received her Ph.D. in biochemistry in 1949 from Cornell University, noted that she will become a great-grandmother in a few weeks time. “I am expecting my first great grandchild to be born later this month, and I am doing all I can to prevent the climate change that would make that child’s world hazardous to live in before the end of his or her life.”

Ferger was arrested in a similar anti-gas storage demonstration at Seneca Lake in November 2014.

All the protesters were part of We Are Seneca Lake’s ongoing civil disobedience campaign against proposed gas storage in underground lakeside salt caverns.

The seven civil disobedients held banners that read, “We Love Seneca Lake” and “Lovers Against Crestwood.”

The group disbanded before noon, and no arrests were made.

The total number of arrests in the sixteen-month-old civil disobedience campaign now stands at 480.

The love poems read to the lake included verses from the 19th century ode, “To Seneca Lake” by poet and geologist James Gates Percival.

In a public statement, Margie Rodgers of Elmira described how the protesters were animated by their love of the lake and by the example of St. Valentine: “We feel duty-bound, as any lover does, to protect our beloved Valentine from harm. In this, we believe we are acting in the spirit of the original St. Valentine, who, according to legend, was killed while protesting the mistreatment of Christian prisoners in Roman jails.”

The 7 risking arrest today were:

Holly Adams, 56, Hunt, Livingston County

Richard Battaglia, 53, Richford, Tioga County

 

Jim Crevelling, 70, Keuka Park, Yates County

 

Martha Ferger, 91, Dryden, Tompkins County

 

Wayne Gottleib, 57, Ithaca, Tompkins County

 

Sandra Marshall, 67, Newfield, Tompkins County

Barbara Perrone, 40, Caroline, Tompkins County

 

Read more about the protesters at: http://www.wearesenecalake.com/seneca-lake-defendes/.

Read more about widespread objections to Crestwood’s gas storage plans: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/26/nyregion/new-york-winemakers-fight-gas-storage-plan-near-seneca-lake.html?_r=0.

Read Gannett’s investigative report about the risks and dangers of LPG gas storage: http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/local/watchdog/2015/06/26/seneca-gas-storage-debated/29272421/.

 

Background on the Protests:

Protesters have been blocking the Crestwood gas storage facility gates since Thursday, October 23, 2014, including a rally with more than 200 people on Friday, October 24th. On Wednesday, October 29th, Crestwood called the police and the first 10 protesters were arrested. More information and pictures of the actions are available at www.WeAreSenecaLake.com.

The unified We Are Seneca Lake protests started on October 23rd because Friday, October 24th marked the day that major new construction on the gas storage facility was authorized to begin. The ongoing acts of civil disobedience come after the community pursued every possible avenue to stop the project and after being thwarted by an unacceptable process and denial of science. The protests are taking place at the gates of the Crestwood compressor station site on the shore of Seneca Lake, the largest of New York’s Finger Lakes.

The methane gas storage expansion project is advancing in the face of broad public opposition and unresolved questions about geological instabilities, fault lines, and possible salinization of the lake, which serves as a source of drinking water for 100,000 people. Crestwood has indicated that it intends to make Seneca Lake the gas storage and transportation hub for the northeast, as part of the gas industry’s planned expansion of infrastructure across the region.Note that the WE ARE SENECA LAKE protest is to stop the expansion of methane gas storage, a separate project from Crestwood’s proposed Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) storage project, which is on hold pending a Department of Environmental Conservation Issues Conference on February 12th, 2015.

As they have for a long time, the protesters are continuing to call on President Obama, U.S. Senators Schumer and Gillibrand, Governor Cuomo, and Congressman Reed to intervene on behalf of the community and halt the dangerous project. In spite of overwhelming opposition, grave geological and public health concerns, Crestwood has federal approval to move forward with plans to store highly pressurized, explosive gas in abandoned salt caverns on the west side of Seneca Lake. While the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has temporarily halted plans to stockpile propane and butane (LPG) in nearby caverns—out of ongoing concerns for safety, health, and the environment—Crestwood is actively constructing infrastructure for the storage of two billion cubic feet of methane (natural gas), with the blessing of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

More background, including about the broad extent of the opposition from hundreds of wineries and more than a dozen local municipalities, is available on the We Are Seneca Lake website at http://www.wearesenecalake.com/press-kit/.

 Posted by at 2:23 pm

Valentines Pictures

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Feb 152016
 

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Valentines Day Blockade

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 Posted by at 12:21 pm

U.S. Vets Lead Civil Disobedience Action at Crestwood to Protest Seneca Lake Gas Storage. Green leader, former NY gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins among 13 arrested in human blockade

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Jan 262016
 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – January 26, 2016

 

media contact: Sandra Steingraber  607.351.0719

 

photos:   http://www.wearesenecalake.com/veterans-pic/

video:   http://www.wearesenecalake.com/veterans-vid

press release: http://www.wearesenecalake.com/veterans/

 

U.S. Vets Lead Civil Disobedience Action at Crestwood to Protest Seneca Lake Gas Storage

Green leader, former NY gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins among 13 arrested in human blockade

 

Watkins Glen, NY – Eleven veterans representing all branches of the U.S. armed forces, were among 13 arrested on Tuesday morning in a human blockade at Crestwood Midstream on Route 14 as part of We Are Seneca Lake’s ongoing civil disobedience campaign against gas storage in underground lakeside salt caverns. The protesters blocked all traffic entering and leaving the facility.

Among them was former NY gubernatorial candidate Howie Hawkins (Green Party), a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps.

Hawkins said, “The massive gas leak in Porter Ranch, California shows the inherent dangers of underground gas storage. The shores of Seneca Lake—New York’s own Napa Valley—are the wrong place for a massive gas storage hub. The salt caverns are too geologically unstable. One accident would turn visitors away and ruin the economy.”

Also joining the protest were Schuyler County resident and U.S. Army veteran Nathan Lewis, who served in Iraq, and Colleen Boland, U.S. Air Force Senior Master Sergeant (retired), who served in the White House during the George W. Bush Administration. Boland served an 8-day jail sentence in November 2014 for a previous act of civil disobedience at the Crestwood entrance.

At 8:45 a.m. this morning, the 13 ceremoniously unfurled banners that read, “Veterans Against Crestwood / Defending the Climate and Seneca Lake,” and formed a human chain across the north entrance of Crestwood Midstream, blocking chemical tanker trucks from leaving and entering the facility.

The group was arrested shortly after 9:00 a.m. by Schuyler County deputies, transported to the Schuyler County Sheriff’s department, charged with disorderly conduct, and released.

The total number of arrests in the sixteen-month-old civil disobedience campaign now stands at 480.

While blockading, the veterans from all branches of the military made public statements about the duty they feel to protect water and the climate.

“I continue to be mindful of my past oath to protect against all enemies, foreign and domestic,” said Colleen Boland, who traveled to more than 20 countries while on active duty.

In her remarks at the gate, Boland addressed recent, accusations that Seneca Lake protesters are “outsiders”:

“When the science on climate change is ignored, when our political leaders do the bidding of the gas industry rather than protect us, people rise up. Veterans rise up. And when we do, we should never—in any instance—be called outsiders here in our own country, in our own state, in the regions where we grew up. Veterans should never be dismissed when we speak out on issues that threaten our well-being and the security of our loved ones.”

Jenifer Paquette, 63, Corning, Steuben County said, “From 1970 to 1973, I served in the U.S. Navy as a Personnelman 3rd Class Petty Officer. Except for that military time, I have lived all of my 63 years in Corning, New York and feel a right and a duty to protect the air, land, and water that is my birthright. The Crestwood gas storage expansion is a threat to those basic rights for me, my son, and my granddaughter.”

Nathan Lewis, 33, Hector, Schuyler County said, “I served 2.5 years in the U.S. Army as a field artilleryman. What I saw in Iraq was that the war on terror is a catastrophe. What I see here at home, in Schuyler County, is that the fossil fuel industry is pushing our ecosystem to the point of collapse.”

The We Are Seneca Lake movement opposes Crestwood’s plans for methane and LPG storage in lakeside salt caverns and has been ongoing since October 2014.

Crestwood’s methane gas storage expansion project was approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in October 2014 in the face of broad public opposition and unresolved questions about geological instabilities, fault lines, and possible salinization of Seneca Lake, which serves as a source of drinking water for 100,000 people.

The 13 arrested today were:

Elliott Adams, 69, Sharon Springs, Schoharie County (veteran, U.S. Army)

Colleen Boland, 59, Elmira, Chemung County (veteran, U.S. Air Force and U.S. Army)

Colleen Condon Coss, 60, West Henrietta, Monroe County

Doug Couchon, 65, Elmira, Chemung County (veteran, U.S. Army National Guard)

Martin C. Dodge, 73, Canandaigua, Ontario County (veteran, U.S. Coast Guard)

Hervie Harris, 70, Elmira, Chemung County (veteran, U.S. Navy)

Howie Hawkins, 63, Syracuse, Onondaga County (veteran, U.S. Marine Corps)

Nathan Lewis, 33, Hector, Schuyler County (veteran, U.S. Army)

Peter Looker, 65, Glenville, Schenectady County

Jenifer Paquette, 63, Corning, Steuben County (veteran, U.S. Navy)

Wendell F. Perks, Jr., 67, Mecklenburg, Schuyler County (veteran, U.S. Army)

Richard Rogers, 67, Spencer, Tioga County (veteran, U.S. Army)

Dwain Wilder, 76, Brighton, Monroe County (veteran, U.S. Navy)

 

Read more about the protesters at: http://www.wearesenecalake.com/seneca-lake-defendes/.

Read more about widespread objections to Crestwood’s gas storage plans: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/26/nyregion/new-york-winemakers-fight-gas-storage-plan-near-seneca-lake.html?_r=0.

Read Gannett’s investigative report about the risks and dangers of LPG gas storage: http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/local/watchdog/2015/06/26/seneca-gas-storage-debated/29272421/.

 

Background on the Protests:

Protesters have been blocking the Crestwood gas storage facility gates since Thursday, October 23, 2014, including a rally with more than 200 people on Friday, October 24th. On Wednesday, October 29th, Crestwood called the police and the first 10 protesters were arrested. More information and pictures of the actions are available at www.WeAreSenecaLake.com.

The unified We Are Seneca Lake protests started on October 23rd because Friday, October 24th marked the day that major new construction on the gas storage facility was authorized to begin. The ongoing acts of civil disobedience come after the community pursued every possible avenue to stop the project and after being thwarted by an unacceptable process and denial of science. The protests are taking place at the gates of the Crestwood compressor station site on the shore of Seneca Lake, the largest of New York’s Finger Lakes.

The methane gas storage expansion project is advancing in the face of broad public opposition and unresolved questions about geological instabilities, fault lines, and possible salinization of the lake, which serves as a source of drinking water for 100,000 people. Crestwood has indicated that it intends to make Seneca Lake the gas storage and transportation hub for the northeast, as part of the gas industry’s planned expansion of infrastructure across the region.Note that the WE ARE SENECA LAKE protest is to stop the expansion of methane gas storage, a separate project from Crestwood’s proposed Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) storage project, which is on hold pending a Department of Environmental Conservation Issues Conference on February 12th, 2015.

As they have for a long time, the protesters are continuing to call on President Obama, U.S. Senators Schumer and Gillibrand, Governor Cuomo, and Congressman Reed to intervene on behalf of the community and halt the dangerous project. In spite of overwhelming opposition, grave geological and public health concerns, Crestwood has federal approval to move forward with plans to store highly pressurized, explosive gas in abandoned salt caverns on the west side of Seneca Lake. While the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has temporarily halted plans to stockpile propane and butane (LPG) in nearby caverns—out of ongoing concerns for safety, health, and the environment—Crestwood is actively constructing infrastructure for the storage of two billion cubic feet of methane (natural gas), with the blessing of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

More background, including about the broad extent of the opposition from hundreds of wineries and more than a dozen local municipalities, is available on the We Are Seneca Lake website at http://www.wearesenecalake.com/press-kit/.

#  #  #

 

 Posted by at 12:55 pm

Photos from Veterans against Crestwood Blockade Jan. 26, 2016

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Jan 262016
 

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Veterans Against Crestwood

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 Posted by at 11:09 am

Seven Arrested in MLK Day Civil Disobedience Action at Crestwood. Blockaders declare solidarity with Californians suffering from massive gas storage leak in Porter Ranch near Los Angeles

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Jan 182016
 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – January 18, 2016

media contact: Sandra Steingraber  607.351.0719

photos:  http://www.wearesenecalake.com/porterranch-pics/

video:   http://www.wearesenecalake.com/porterranch-vid/

Seven Arrested in MLK Day Civil Disobedience Action at Crestwood

Blockaders declare solidarity with Californians suffering from massive gas storage leak in Porter Ranch near Los Angeles

Watkins Glen, NY – In his famous Letter from a Birmingham Jail, the Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., wrote, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.”

In that spirit, and as part of the ongoing civil disobedience campaign against gas storage called We Are Seneca Lake, seven protesters from six different New York counties declared their support for the residents of Porter Ranch, California, where a massive leak from an underground gas storage facility has sickened and displaced thousands of families and shows no sign of abating.

The seven formed a human chain across the north entrance of Crestwood Midstream on Route 14 at 8:45 a.m. this morning. While blocking all traffic entering and leaving the facility, the group read a statement of solidarity with the people of Porter Ranch before their arrest by Schuyler County deputies at 9:15 a.m.

Today’s blockaders held banners that said, “Seneca Lake to Porter Ranch: Shut It All Down” and “Gas Storage Courts Disaster.” Porter Ranch activists use #shutitALLdown as their signature hashtag on Twitter.

All those arrested were transported to the Schuyler County Sheriff’s department, charged with disorderly conduct, and released. The total number of arrests in the sixteen-month-old civil disobedience campaign now stands at 467.

The uncontrolled gas leak at the Aliso Canyon gas storage facility—the single largest in the U.S.—was discovered on Oct. 23, 2015. Governor Brown declared a state of emergency on Jan. 6, 2016. Thus far, more than 2,500 families have fled their homes and more than 1,000 children have been relocated to other schools. Health officials now acknowledge they initially underestimated the scope of the gas leak and the possible attendant health risks. Self-reported health complaints include nausea, dizziness, vomiting, shortness of breath, and headaches.

As We Are Seneca Lake protesters noted in their statement of support, the massive gas leak at Porter Ranch is a problem with no end in sight and no obvious solution: “People of Porter Ranch, we know your lives were upended because no one replaced a safety valve at the bottom of the well. We don’t believe we have bottom safety valves here either…. What affects you directly today could affect us directly tomorrow.”

Elizabeth Peet, 48, of the Town of Hector in Schuyler County, said, “Today as we celebrate the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., I am reminded that my civic responsibility includes civil disobedience while my elected officials continue to fail to protect our lake and surrounding communities from dangerous gas storage expansion.”

Michael Black, 63, of Lakemont in Yates County, said, “I was born in Schuyler County and have lived on the shores of Seneca Lake for nearly a half century. I now live seven miles from Crestwood. What happens here happens to me as well. If the gas storage facility here were to leak—as is happening in southern California—I could be in danger. If it explodes I would likely be killed.”

The We Are Seneca Lake movement opposes Crestwood’s plans for methane and LPG storage in lakeside salt caverns and has been ongoing since October 2014.

Crestwood’s methane gas storage expansion project was approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in October 2014 in the face of broad public opposition and unresolved questions about geological instabilities, fault lines, and possible salinization of Seneca Lake, which serves as a source of drinking water for 100,000 people.

The seven arrested today were:

Richard Battaglia, 53, Richford, Tioga County

Michael Black, 63, Lakemont, Yates County

Caroline Byrne, 39, Ithaca, Tompkins County

Angela Cannon-Crothers, 50, Naples, Ontario County

Kim Knight, 31, Covert, Seneca County

Stacey McNeill, 45, Ithaca, Tompkins County

Elizabeth Peet, 48, Hector, Schuyler County

 

Read more about the protesters at: http://www.wearesenecalake.com/seneca-lake-defendes/.

Read more about widespread objections to Crestwood’s gas storage plans: http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/26/nyregion/new-york-winemakers-fight-gas-storage-plan-near-seneca-lake.html?_r=0.

Read Gannett’s investigative report about the risks and dangers of LPG gas storage: http://www.democratandchronicle.com/story/news/local/watchdog/2015/06/26/seneca-gas-storage-debated/29272421/.

Background on the Protests:

Protesters have been blocking the Crestwood gas storage facility gates since Thursday, October 23, 2014, including a rally with more than 200 people on Friday, October 24th. On Wednesday, October 29th, Crestwood called the police and the first 10 protesters were arrested. More information and pictures of the actions are available at www.WeAreSenecaLake.com.

The unified We Are Seneca Lake protests started on October 23rd because Friday, October 24th marked the day that major new construction on the gas storage facility was authorized to begin. The ongoing acts of civil disobedience come after the community pursued every possible avenue to stop the project and after being thwarted by an unacceptable process and denial of science. The protests are taking place at the gates of the Crestwood compressor station site on the shore of Seneca Lake, the largest of New York’s Finger Lakes.

The methane gas storage expansion project is advancing in the face of broad public opposition and unresolved questions about geological instabilities, fault lines, and possible salinization of the lake, which serves as a source of drinking water for 100,000 people. Crestwood has indicated that it intends to make Seneca Lake the gas storage and transportation hub for the northeast, as part of the gas industry’s planned expansion of infrastructure across the region.Note that the WE ARE SENECA LAKE protest is to stop the expansion of methane gas storage, a separate project from Crestwood’s proposed Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) storage project, which is on hold pending a Department of Environmental Conservation Issues Conference on February 12th.

As they have for a long time, the protesters are continuing to call on President Obama, U.S. Senators Schumer and Gillibrand, Governor Cuomo, and Congressman Reed to intervene on behalf of the community and halt the dangerous project. In spite of overwhelming opposition, grave geological and public health concerns, Crestwood has federal approval to move forward with plans to store highly pressurized, explosive gas in abandoned salt caverns on the west side of Seneca Lake. While the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) has temporarily halted plans to stockpile propane and butane (LPG) in nearby caverns—out of ongoing concerns for safety, health, and the environment—Crestwood is actively constructing infrastructure for the storage of two billion cubic feet of methane (natural gas), with the blessing of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC).

More background, including about the broad extent of the opposition from hundreds of wineries and more than a dozen local municipalities, is available on the We Are Seneca Lake website at http://www.wearesenecalake.com/press-kit/.

#  #  #

 

 Posted by at 2:25 pm

Pictures from Porter Ranch blockade

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Jan 182016
 

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Seneca Lake To Porter Ranch Shut It Down

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 Posted by at 10:56 am