Not in our county, state, or aquifer: Valdosta votes against Sabal Trail pipeline tonight

Tonight at 5:30 PM the Valdosta City Council will vote on a resolution against the Sabal Trail pipeline they discussed Tuesday at their Work Session. Valdosta added a clause about the Floridan Aquifer to the clauses already in the resolution Lowndes County passed Tuesday evening that Valdosta is supporting. Valdosta’s aquifer clause reads:

WHEREAS, the City of Valdosta has concerns regarding any potential effect the proposed pipeline or its construction might have on the Floridan aquifer, the primary source of the drinking water supply for our City, County and the south Georgia area; and

As VSU Prof. Don Thieme remarked yesterday,

Many thanks to Tim Carroll for adding the part about this important environmental issue which affects everyone in the city of Valdosta and Lowndes County as well. This is not just about the property rights of a few concerned citizens although those are important as well and demand protection from elected politicians.

Following the resolutions by Hamilton County, Florida, and in Georgia by Dougherty County, Albany, Terrell County, and Lowndes County, this is a long string of counties and cities resolved against not just Sabal Trail’s proposed paths, but in most cases against having it anywhere in their county or in their state. And Thomas County just woke up Tuesday morning. Come to Valdosta City Hall tonight to applaud local government actually representing its citizens against what Item 9 of the Georgia Water Coalition Dirty Dozen called

an invader ”one every bit as worrisome as the boll weevil that destroyed cotton harvests in the 1900s, except this one takes farmers’ land as well as crops.

Tuesday morning a Thomas County resident woke up the Thomas County Commission with a plea against the pipeline and for solar power for local jobs. If Sabal Trail actually listens to Lowndes County and Valdosta and moves the pipeline, the only proposed route in Georgia that does not go through Lowndes County goes through Thomasville and Thomas County.

Meanwhile, a growing list of counties and cities has already passed resolutions against Sabal Trail or are about to, all before the 24 December 2014 deadline for commenting or filing a motion to intervene on Sabal Trail’s new FERC docket CP15-17. Remember to file your own ecomment or motion to intervene before December 24th.

Four of these counties (Colquitt, Brooks, Hamilton, and Lowndes) are in WWALS watersheds, while Valdosta is the biggest city in those watersheds, and in all of the Suwannee River Basin.

Sylvester, Ashburn, Turner County, Tifton, Tift County, Adel, Cook County, Hahira, Lake Park, and Jennings are all, like Valdosta, on at least one proposed route alternative, and might want to consider their own resolutions.

Corporate profit is no excuse to risk our Withlacoochee River or our drinking water, wildlife, native vegetation, or private property. A growing number of counties and cities agrees on that point.