Tag Archives: Spectra Energy

Sabal Trail, WWALS, OSFR’s Merrillee Malwitz-Jipson, and FERC’s John Peconom in Jasper, FL 2014-10-21

Four years ago Merrillee Malwitz-Jipson set the festive tone outside a special Sabal Trail Open House:

Merrillee Malwitz-Jipson and family, Open House
Photo: John S. Quarterman, the family that demonstrates together stays together: “No pipeline in springs heartland” and “No pipeline in my future” and “Stop fossil fuel production”.

Merrillee has been in the thick of opposing fossil fuel boondoggles and promoting clean solar power since at least 2013.

Why was this one of only two Sabal Trail Open Houses in fall 2014, way back when FERC’s John Peconom actually answered when any of us called? Continue reading

Sabal Trail leaked odorless gas, Suwannee County, FL 2018-09-29

Sabal Trail didn’t tell the state of Florida until a week later that it had leaked odorless gas from its Hildreth Compressor Station site in Suwannee County, Florida. And 10,405.5 pounds of Volatile Organic Compounds. What were those possibly hazardous substances, Sabal Trail?

Stt-leak,

Apparently they weren’t prepared for lightning. Where’s your vaunted cathodic ionization now, Sabal Trail? You and all the other pipeline companies claim that will detect leaks.

Hildreth Compressor Station Natural Gas Release Incident

Continue reading

All settled with Sabal Trail without jury 2018-09-13

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Valdosta, GA, September 13, 2018 — This morning two landowners from Moultrie, Colquitt County, Georgia, and the Bell brothers of a subject property in Mitchell County, Georgia, all settled with Sabal Trail Transmission about payment for easements for a 36-inch natural gas pipeline through their land.

Defendant Jeb Bell said afterwards,

I am extremely unhappy, but such is life.

We fought as good as we could for as long as we could.

The defendants’ attorney Jonathan P. Waters had no comment on the confidential settlement of these cases.

These cases were originally filed by Sabal Trail Transmission against Georgia landowners in March 2016, invoking federal eminent domain supplied to Sabal Trail by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on February 2, 2016. The pipeline has since been built through the defendants’ land with no agreement and no payment.

Defendants Attorney Jonathan P. Waters, Attorneys
Defendants’ Attorney Jonathan P. Waters

Judge Clay D. Land, Chief U.S. District Judge, Middle District of Georgia, told the jury afterwards Continue reading

Sabal Trail Jury Trials Continue 2018-09-11

Update 2018-09-13: The outcome.

Attorney Jonathan P. Waters had some new questions this time for the same old Sabal Trail witnesses from last time. The trial continues this morning; see you there.

Gil Norman, Sabal Trail Right of Way Manager, who at $200,000 a year has made more than $1 million off of helping Sabal Trail get easements to “use as we see fit in our absolute discretion.“; Michael Fletcher, Engineering Specialist, who said Sabal Trail put thicker pipe on land that might be developed (so thinner on farmland) and pipe probably would have less top cover under dips between hills; and property appraiser Carl Schultz, who “summarized the summaries” of eleven papers, at least one paid for by a pipeline company.

And different defendants, pictured here going into the building yesterday morning.

Kenneth Gregory Isaacs, Atty Jonathan P. Waters, Daniel L. Dunn (GBA), Hamilton Isaacs, Defendants
Kenneth Gregory Isaacs, Atty Jonathan P. Waters, Daniel L. Dunn (GBA Associates), Hamilton Isaacs

Defendant Jeb Bell brought a 32-inch hoop to illustrate how big Sabal Trail is bigger than that at 36 inches).

Jeb Bell with 32 hoop (smaller than Sabal Trail), Defendants

When: Continuing 9AM Wednesday morning, September 12, 2018.

Where: Main Courtroom, Second Floor, U.S. District Court
401 N Patterson St., Valdosta, GA 31601

Sabal Trail Right of Way Manager Gil Norman attested that FERC could approve changing Continue reading

WCTV will report on Homerville pipeline explosion tonight 2018-08-20

Noelani Mathews of WCTV stopped off at the origin of the AGL pipeline that goes to Homerville, on her way to the site of the Friday explosion. Her story should be on the air at 5PM and 6PM tonight.

AGL, Moody Takeoff
WARNING
HIGH PRESSURE
NATURAL GAS

Atlanta Gas Light,
An AGL Resources Company

She asked me pipeline context questions, which I answered as best I could, given that the origin is on my property in Lowndes County, Georgia.

She remembered reporting from that same location back in 2016. Continue reading

FERC rubberstamps four rehearing denials and a new pipeline on a Friday 2018-08-10

Scurrying to use its rubberstamp before a Commissioner departing leaves it tied 2:2, FERC once again rubberstamped multiple pipelines, this time three on a Friday plus an LNG export project, while neither its main online library nor its backup library yielded copies of the orders.

I found these four by googling:

  • 164 FERC ¶ 61,099 Florida Southeast Connection, LLC Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, Sabal Trail Transmission, Docket Nos. CP14-554-003, LLC CP15-16-004, LLC CP15-17-003, ORDER DENYING REHEARING, Issued August 10, 2018
  • 164 FERC ¶ 61,098, PennEast Pipeline Company, LLC, Docket No. CP15-558-001, ORDER ON REHEARING, August 10, 2018.
  • 164 FERC ¶ 61,100, Atlantic Coast Pipeline, LLC, Dominion Transmission, Inc., Atlantic Coast Pipeline, LLC, Piedmont Natural Gas Company, Inc., Docket Nos. CP15-554-002, CP15-555-001, CP15-556-001, Order on Rehearing, August 10 2018.
  • 164 FERC ¶ 61,102, Dominion Energy Cove Point LNG, LP, Docket No. CP17-15-001, ORDER DENYING REHEARING, August 10, 2018.

Oh, wait, a mention of a docket number in a FERC agenda leads me to one more Friday rubberstamp, of a new Transco pipeline in New Jersey:

FERC rubberstamp

  • 164 FERC ¶ 61,101, Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Company, LLC, Docket No. CP17-490-000, ORDER ISSUING CERTIFICATE, August 10, 2018.

Commissioner Cheryl A. LaFleur dissented from Continue reading

Benefits must outweigh harms –WWALS to FERC Re: Pipeline Certification NOI 2018-07-25

Here’s the WWALS response to FERC’s Notice of Inquiry (NOI) about “Certification of New Interstate Natural Gas Facilities”. A few excerpts:

FERC should approve no more pipelines without comparing not just coal plants to natural gas plants, but also comparing sun and wind power. If that means no more pipelines, so be it….

In one of the most egregious cases, Sabal Trail commenced construction on the land of the Bell Brothers in Mitchell County, Georgia, and when they countersued, Continue reading

Levy Co., FL, ranch invaded by Sabal Trail’s invasive weeds

A pair of ranchers report an epidemic of stillborn calves, four dead mother cows, equipment damaged by too-steep grades, invasive weeds planted as a “cover Crop” by Sabal Trail and now spreading through seeds in cow manure, hay unusable, and:

At this point we are requesting help to repair the land that was never restored. The grade and the grasses require a farmer to repair not a Sable trails employee can repair

We have waited until now for you to not answer or get back with us and still our ranch issues are growing while you look into your options.

WWALS Digitized Pipeline Path, Google Maps, Maps
WWALS Digitized Pipeline Path

Maybe FERC didn’t want the public to see this. FERC’s elibrary shows Accession Number 20180716-5129, Report / Form of alexander cochrane under CP15-17,, but attempts to retrieve the files listed get:

The requested URL was rejected. Please consult with your administrator.

Your support ID is: 7429593144853677013

As so often, FERC’s backup elibrary Continue reading

FERC and Sabal Trail admit Sierra Club won 2018-07-03

One week after losing a jury trial in the U.S. Middle District Court of Georgia, the Sabal Trail fracked methane pipeline and its purveyor of federal eminent domain, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), declined to appeal their huge DC District Court loss of last August.

Sierra Club, Press Release, 3 July 2018, Fracked Gas Pipeline Company and Federal Regulator Will Not Seek Supreme Court Review of Landmark Ruling: Existing Decision Means FERC Must Consider Downstream Greenhouse Gas Emissions,

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Neither the builders of the fracked gas Sabal Trail Pipeline nor the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) will ask the Supreme Court to review a landmark ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit from last year. That decision required FERC to consider the effects of downstream greenhouse gases when deciding whether to approve proposed pipelines that transport gas.

In response, Sierra Club Staff Attorney Elly Benson released the following statement:

Elly Benson, Sierra Club Attorney
Elly Benson, Sierra Club Staff Attorney

“We are glad to see FERC accept its responsibility to consider greenhouse gas emissions from burning transported gas at downstream power plants. These dirty, dangerous, and unnecessary pipelines pose a threat to our communities and climate. They should not be proposed, much less built, at a time when clean, renewable energy sources are abundant and affordable. We will continue to monitor the pipeline permitting process to ensure the law is followed.”

The pipeline industry press was not thrilled. Charlie Passut, Natural Gas Intelligence, 5 July 2018, FERC Declines to Appeal Landmark GHG Case to Supreme Court, Continue reading

Landowner wins over Sabal Trail in jury trial, jsq on Scott James radio 2018-06-29

The just compensation for property takings required by the Fifth Amendment is not “just” compensation, said Scott James. And a jury of peers of a landowner told Sabal Trail to pay up five times what it offered for an easement for its fracked gas pipeline.

“…nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.”
—Fifth Amendment, U.S. Constitution

Scott said this jury award was big news and asked if it was just compensation. I said yes, front page in the Valdosta Daily Times.


VDT front page

And five times is more just than before. But how is a one-time payment Continue reading