Tag Archives: Federal Energy Regulatory Commission

FGT pipeline noise, Suwannee County 2018-02-25

It sounded like a jet engine Wednesday evening, said a WWALS member as a pipeline let loose in Suwannee County. (Hear it for yourself in WWALS videos four days later.) Was it a leak? A planned release? A road construction break? We get no answers, just runarounds, from the federal and state agencies that permitted all the interstate natural gas pipelines into Florida. They passed the buck to Suwannee County Fire Rescue. At least Suwannee BOCC opposed the Sabal Trail pipeline and approved a solar farm.

Photo: John S. Quarterman for WWALS 2018-02-25 of FGT pipeline at Suwannee Oaks Drive.
Photo: John S. Quarterman for WWALS 2018-02-25 of FGT at Suwannee Oaks Drive.

Neighbors preparing to evacuate February 21, 2018, confirmed the location: just north of 208th Street, at Continue reading

Sabal Trail troubled that the experts were right

“Without the certificate,
they cannot operate.”
—John S. Quarterman
of WWALS

Protesters turned out in St. Pete last year, and now a reporter from Tampa posts an update on double-sad news for Sabal Trail (I’ve added links).

Carmella Guiol, Kate Bradshaw, Creative Loafing Tampa Bay, 15 Feb 2018, The experts were right: Troubles for the Sabal Trail pipeline: They warned us — correctly — about the pipeline’s dangers to the environment. ,

For years, environmentalists warned against constructing the Sabal Trail pipeline. Yet construction wore on, and the controversial natural gas conduit is functional — for now.

Photo: Terrence Smith. : TOLD YA SO: In St. Petersburg, protesters railed against the controversial project in 2017.
Photo: Terrence Smith. TOLD YA SO: In St. Petersburg, protesters railed against the controversial project in 2017.

The 515-mile pipeline snakes from Alabama to central Florida, and when it’s running, it brings natural gas (mined using the process of fracking) to power plants in the Sunshine State, where it generates energy that power companies sell to customers. The $3.5 billion project is a joint venture between Enbridge, NextEra Energy and Duke Energy Corporation, which make up the group Sabal Trail LLC.

The Sierra Club sued over that last one, but despite Continue reading

FERC cry of wolf delays mandate from DC Circuit Court 2018-01-07 2018-02-07

Court mandate delayed because of FERC crying wolf, even though Sabal Trail has been shut down most of the past six, now seven weeks. So the three little pigs get a temporary reprieve from the Big Bad Wolf of sun and wind power.

Gavin Bade, E&E News, Feb. 8, 2018, Court filings stave off Sabal Trail pipeline shutdown, for now,

But Wednesday came and went this week with no word from the court.

E&E reports that may be because judges need time to consider some last-minute filings in the case.

What are FERC and Sabal Trail so scared of? The wind and the sun:

‘Then I’ll huff, and I’ll puff, and I’ll blow your house in.’

So he huffed, and he puffed, and he blew his house in, and ate up the little pig.

Illustration In English Fairy Tales, Jacobs, J., 1895, via Boston Public Library, Three Little Pigs
Illustration for The Story of the Three Little Pigs, in English Fairy Tales, Joseph Jacobs, 1895 New York: Grosset & Dunlap (2nd edition?) Boston Public Library.

For the entire four years since the Sabal Trail pipeline was first announced in 2013, renewable energy has produced more new U.S. energy than natural gas, according to FERC’s own Office of Energy Projects Energy Infrastructure Update For December 2017. Those are the wolves Continue reading

FERC cries wolf for Sabal Trail to DC Circuit Court 2018-01-06 2018-02-06

Update 2018-02-08: FERC cry of wolf delays mandate from DC Circuit Court 2018-01-07 2018-02-07.

Instead of answering Sabal Trail’s Friday cry of wolf by issuing new certificates yesterday, FERC instead took that cry to the DC Circuit Court, asking for a delay of today’s issue of a mandate.

FERC did not issue new certificates yesterday, and the Court did not issue a mandate today. Of course, today was merely the first day the Court could have issued a mandate, so we’ll see.

Don’t listen to FERC and Sabal Trail’s cries of wolf, Court! What’s really eating their pipelines is solar and wind power taking over the market.

Illustration by Francis Barlow Aesop's fable The Boy who Cried Wolf, called by him DE PASTORIS PUERO ET AGRICOLIS, 1687
The illustration by Francis Barlow Aesop’s fable “The Boy who Cried Wolf”, called by him DE PASTORIS PUERO ET AGRICOLIS, 1687

For the fourth year running, renewable energy has produced more new U.S. energy than natural gas, according to FERC’s own Office of Energy Projects Energy Infrastructure Update For December 2017. Four years means ever since the Sabal Trail pipeline was first announced in 2013. Those are the wolves after those poor pipeline Applicants: solar and wind power.

Gavin Bade, Utility Dive, Feb. 6, 2018, FERC asks DC Circuit to delay issuing order to halt Sabal Trail pipeline, Continue reading

FERC requires Sabal Trail report mixing of Randy Dowdy’s subsoil and topsoil

Bad news doubled for the little pipeline that cried wolf: FERC did not file any certificates today for Sabal Trail, and Brooks County farmer Randy Dowdy is vindicated with a letter from FERC demanding a plan from Sabal Trailwithin 20 days” (emphasis in the original) for “for investigating the actual extent of the topsoil and subsoil mixing on the Dowdy and Robinson properties and the reported mixing on the Jones property.”

Sabal Trail through Randy Dowdy fields and Little Creek, Google Map
Map: Google, of Sabal Trail pipeline through Randy Dowdy’s soybean fields, next to Little Creek, which runs into Okapilco Creek, into the Withlacoochee River, into the Suwannee, to the Gulf.

That letter refers to an inspection report of November 14, 2017, also filed by FERC today, that documents that “topsoil and subsoil mixing has occurred in agricultural areas during construction of Sabal Trail Transmission, LLC’s (Sabal Trail) Sabal Trail Pipeline Project.”

FERC has thus validated Continue reading

FERC rubberstamps FSEIS, FPL backstops, GA Rep Debbie Buckner and Sierra Club object 2018-02-05

In less than three hours since I submitted the WWALS motion to deny Sabal Trail’s sketchy request for emergency certificates, four more major filings appeared: FERC rubberstamped a Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (FSEIS), FPL cheered on the so-called emergency request, Georgia State Rep. Debbie Buckner objected, and Sierra Club objected. Sabal Trail said it best:

The Commission should decline the Applicants’ invitation to subvert the Court’s determination that the Project cannot operate pending compliance with NEPA.

Cover page, FSEIS

FERC rubberstamps Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (FSEIS)

Continue reading

No five-month extension for Sabal Trail, FERC 2018-01-26

Instead of giving Sabal Trail a five-month extension, FERC should revoke Sabal Trail’s Certificate of Convenience and Necessity, as the U.S. District Court already ordered. Sabal Trail no longer has the customers for 90+% of its gas on which that FERC’s February 2 Order depended, not since Sabal Trail dropped Duke Energy Florida (DEF) from its customer index on New Year’s Day.

Tillerson and Czaputowicz
Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (L) and Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputowicz shake hands during a joint press conference after their meeting in Warsaw on January 27, 2018. / AFP / Wojtek RADWANSKI

It’s time to stop the fossil fuel industry using Sabal Trail as a political tool to undermine the overall energy stability and security of the U.S. southeast for the profit of a few companies from Texas and Canada. Just like the U.S. State Department recommends for Europe, FERC should seek to diversify energy supplies by getting on with solar power onshore and wind power offshore in the Sunshine State, Georgia, and everywhere else.

Suwannee FGT M&R Yard KMI JEP, Suwannee County
Photo: John S. Quarterman for WWALS on Southwings flight June 21, 2016, of site of Sabal Trail Suwannee County M&R Station connecting to Florida Gas Transmission (FGT).

What’s that “one additional M&R facility,” Sabal Trail? Is it the one in Suwannee County to feed your fracked gas through Continue reading

Critical Notice of Sabal Trail Hildreth Compressor outage 2018-01-24

Why are you having an outage at your Hildreth Compressor Station in Suwannee County, Florida, Sabal Trail? And are there continuing stink leaks at your site without a compressor at Dunnellon, Florida in Marion County? Meanwhile, you’re still shipping nothing. For that $3 or $4 billion, much more electricity from solar power could be online right now in Florida, shutting down gas power plants instead of building them.

Hildreth Compressor Station,
Photo: by anonymous, of Sabal Trail Hildreth Compressor Station site, 2016-12-12.

Thanks to eagle-eye WWALS member Janet Barrow for spotting Continue reading

Sabal Trail to Gulfstream, Martin County, and where? 2018-01-18

Sabal Trail ramped up the last couple of days, to 196 thousand Dekatherms/day (MDTH/day) today. Most of that they’re shipping out to Gulfstream at Osceola. with a bit through FSC to FPL’s Martin County power plant, and the rest somewhere.

Why now? During the last cold spell, they spiked briefly in the first week of January, but dropped back to zero while there was snow on the ground in Florida.

So what are they up to now?

This month (2018-01-01 -- 2018-01-18), TIMELY

From the various pipeline’s FERC-required daily postings, Gulfstream shows Continue reading

Flash in the pan, Sabal Trail? 2018-01-06

Where did that gas go for that one day, Sabal Trail? You didn’t do a very good job of demonstrating customers by dropping back to less than 2% Nom/Cap today. Did you break something? Again? Explain to us, FERC: why is this pipeline needed?

January 2018, Operational Capacity
January 2018

Also, FERC, if you did your job, we wouldn’t have to draw graphs like this. The best way to do your job would be to shut down Sabal Trail. Continue reading