Tag Archives: Hamilton County

Hamilton Solar Farm by Duke Energy at Sabal Trail pipeline

Irony: Duke Energy is building a 75 megawatt solar farm right next to the Sabal Trail pipeline, of which Duke is a 7.5% owner.

Dust no more! The same place Chris Mericle reported having a dust storm little more than a week ago, last week he discovered Duke Energy is replacing the center pivots with solar panels.

SW 69th Drive and SW 40th Avenue, At Sabal Trail pipeline
SW 69th Drive and SW 40th Avenue, in Sabal Trail path digitized by WWALS.

The little red dot near the center of the above map is where Duke Energy says this solar farm will go. The red line is the Sabal Trail pipeline, next to the power line Duke will be using for the solar electricity. How about turn off the pipeline, Duke, and put solar panels along its right of way? As I computed using Sabal Trail’s own figures three and a half years ago, half that RoW acreage could generate just as much electricity from the sun as that pipeline would ever produce, and solar panel prices have gone down since then.

Duke Energy Florida, unknown date, Hamilton Solar Plant, Continue reading

Dust storm in Hamilton County, FL 2017-10-29

Pesticide dust blew across the road between the Withlacoochee and Suwannee Rivers just the other day:

Dust storm hiding power line pylons, On SW 69th Drive
Photo: WWALS member Chris Mericle, looking north from SW 69th Drive

Nearby resident and WWALS member Brit McClung says:

“A good portion the chemicals that are applied to that field wind up on my front porch, on me and in my lungs with the dirt.”

His land is just northeast and a church is southeast of Continue reading

Sasser Landing to Jennings Bluff & Dead River Sink 2015-06-14

See three sinks, a waterfall, and a distributary in these videos from the WWALS Outing to Turket Creek Waterfall, the Alapahoochee River, the Alapaha River Sink, and the Dead River Sink, June 14, 2015. A WWALS video playlist follows the links to each video below. Continue reading

Permit-less Sabal Trail pipeline risked by new sinkhole

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

(See also PDF and previous blog post.)

Live Oak, FL, October 5, 2017 — Sabal Trail, operating without a permit, is at risk from a new sinkhole within 60 feet of its 36-inch diameter, high-pressure, fracked methane pipe under Suwannee River State Park (SRSP), between the Suwannee River and the drill site in Hamilton County. Such sinkholes are among the geological risks WWALS warned about that have happened in the fragile karst limestone containing our drinking water in the Floridan Aquifer. We were assured in October 2015 by Sabal Trail and the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) that sinkholes and frac-outs would not happen or would be detected and fixed. They keep happening, and Sabal Trail has done nothing about this one. Sabal Trail should not even be continuing operations after the DC Circuit Court vacated its permit six weeks ago.

jsq over sinkhole, SRSP
Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman at new sinkhole in Suwannee River State Park, 2017-10-03.
Photo: Christopher J. Mericle, Chair, N. Florida Working Group, Suwannee-St. Johns Group, Sierra Club Florida.

In WWALS vs. Sabal Trail & FDEP (October 2015), FDEP’s one witness, Lisa Prather, said under oath (see http://wwals.net/blog/?p=27799):

Well, the Suwannee River crossing doesn’t, in fact, have any impacts to an outstanding Florida water, because the directional drill commences in uplands and terminates in uplands. So there are no surface water impacts at that crossing that would affect the 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.

Suwannee Riverkeeper John S. Quarterman says:

“Email to Ms. Prather’s address now comes back with an error message, while the rest of us are left Continue reading

Sinkhole at Sabal Trail path through SRSP, Hamilton Co., FL 2017-10-03

Update 2017-10-05: Press Release.

Yesterday we found a fresh sinkhole within 60 feet of Sabal Trail’s pipe under Suwannee River State Park (SRSP), between the Suwannee River and the drill site in Hamilton County.

60 feet from sinkhole to pipeline, SRSP

These pictures are by Christopher J. Mericle. He is a WWALS member, and also the Chair of the North Florida Working Group of the Suwannee-St. Johns Group, Sierra Club Florida.

You can see the sinkhole extends underground to the south, on the far side in this picture, towards the pipeline: Continue reading

Valdosta WWTP manned 24/7 with backup generators before Hurricane Irma 2017-09-09

Don’t spill, Valdosta. Don’t leak, Sabal Trail. Hurricane Irma is bad enough already.

Valdosta announced its WWTP would be “manned around the clock”, so I called down there before 8AM this Saturday morning, and somebody did answer immediately. I told him as Suwannee Riverkeeper I was concerned for people downstream who don’t want any spills during the upcoming rains, so I was glad to see it was true they were there. I asked him if they had backup generators. He said yes. Of course, that doesn’t handle every manhole cover. We shall see. Don’t spill, Valdosta! (Or Lowndes County, or Tifton, or anybody else.)

NOAA NHC Rain Prediction, Hurricane Irma, 9 Sep 2017
Currently expecting somewhere between 4 and 10 inches of rain on Valdosta. Map from National Hurricane Center, 2017-09-09 8AM.

City of Valdosta, PR, 8 September 2017, Valdosta-Lowndes County Hurricane Irma Update, Continue reading

Hardee Spring and Plantation, Withlacoochee River, Hamilton County, FL

Yes, Hardee Spring is accessible by land, off of 34th Street NW, Jennings, Florida, aka Hardee Camp Road, but it’s on private land. It’s on one of four parcels totaling 305 acres, with 8,000 feet (1.6 miles) of river frontage and a lodge, which can be yours for a mere $8.5 million. Maybe Suwannee River Water Management District (SRWMD) should buy it, since SRWMD already owns the next properties upstream and downstream on the Withlacoochee River. Or maybe it should be turned into a state park. Or maybe somebody wants to donate it to WWALS for an office location.

Map: River Error Farms Inc., Hardee Spring, Hamilton County, FL
Map from SRWMD PARCEL ASSESSMENT SUMMARY.

Continue reading