Click here for downloadable copy: 10 Reasons Handout
10 Reasons to REJECT Fracked-Gas Pipelines
1. Pipeline safety standards don’t protect people.
Federal pipelineregulations are weak and don’t go nearly far enough to protect people and their property. Rural communities are categorized as “low consequence areas.” Because of this designation, cheap, thin-gauge metal pipe is allowed, even for huge, high-pressure lines such as the proposed Constitution and NED pipelines. Shut-off valves are often as far as 10 miles apart. And there are NO minimum distances from homes, barns or other structures required by federal regulations, no matter how large the pipeline.
2. Pipeline accidents are inevitable.
Williams Partners (the company behind Constitution) is responsible for an alarming number of recent pipeline and compressor station explosions, several of which resulted from problems the company knew about but failed to correct. As recently as June 2015, about 130 people were evacuated from their homes following a Williams gas-pipeline explosion in Lycoming County, PA. Find more facts on Williams incidents here: http://goo.gl/4x6QAE Kinder Morgan (the company behind NED) has had dozens of serious pipeline accidents and explosions, resulting in injuries, irreversible damage to private property and death. Many of the accidents were caused by bad welds, poor maintenance and corrosion. See a list of documented Kinder Morgan accidents here: http://goo.gl/fuOa55
3. Pipelines cause property values to plummet. P
ipeline companies make small, one-time payments for the land their lines permanently occupy (called easements). Any money offered to individual landowners is based on the low end of current property values, and is only for the 50- to 100-foot-wide easement the pipeline occupies, not the entire property. The landowner must continue to pay taxes on this unusable land while the pipeline company profits from it for years to come. Once a pipeline right-of-way is permitted by federal and state authorities, that right-of-way becomes a corridor for any number of energy infrastructures—including more pipelines.
4. Pipelines make homes and property extremely difficult to sell.
Few people would want to buy a home near a large-diameter high-pressure gas line. Some banks are even refusing to grant mortgages for homes near fracked-gas pipelines.
5. Fracked gas is accelerating climate change.
Fracked gas (a.k.a. shale gas) is mostly methane. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas. Measured from extraction to combustion, the use of shale gas is more destructive to the climate than CO2 from burning coal. When leaked or vented into the atmosphere, methane is 86 times more powerful a greenhouse gas than CO2. Reducing methane emissions is one of the most effective
6. The gas in these new pipelines is not for America.
Kinder Morgan states that only a fraction of the NED pipeline’s gas (0.5 Bcf/day) would be used in the United States. More than 75% of NED’s remaining gas wouldbe shipped to Canada via the Maritimes and Northeast pipeline. From there gas would be exported to European and Asian markets—where gas sells for two to five times the US price. Less than 1% of the gas transported by the Constitution pipeline is slated for local use. The largest portion would be shipped to Canada via the Iroquois pipeline. Once there, the gas would be liquified and shipped to foreign markets on LNG tanker ships.
7. Exporting US shale gas will increase Americans’ energy bills.
The majority of the gas transported by the Constitution and NED pipelines would leave the US. Exporting America’s gas will dramatically raise gas prices in this country. Building the Constitution, NED and other currently proposed pipelines will condemn American families and businesses to decades of higher energy bills.
8. Fracked gas is blocking the transition to renewable energy.
With the closing of many coal-fired power plants, the sensible next step is to invest in solar, wind and other renewable energy sources. Instead, fracked-gas-fired power plants are being proposed along gas pipeline routes. These dangerous, toxic plants will prevent the northeast from achieving anywhere near its planned renewable-energy goals in the next 15 years. Worse, fracked-gas pipelines and power plants commit us to an unhealthy, unsafe and,
9. Pipelines create almost no local jobs.
According to Constitution Pipeline Company’s own report to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), their 124-mile-long line would create a maximum of seven full-time jobs in New York. Kinder Morgan is promising thousands of jobs with its 296-mile-long NED pipeline, but, as with all pipelines, most of those jobs would be temporary, and most would go to company employees brought in from southern and western states. On the other hand, in 2014 the renewable-energy sector created 50% more jobs than the pipeline industry. Unlike pipeline construction, these are safe, sustainable, long-term local jobs for local people.
10. Pipelines don’t bring tax-revenue windfalls.
Pipeline companies promise lawmakers and the public millions in tax revenue in exchange for support of their gas transmission lines. Once the taxes are due, however, those companies do everything in their power to get out of paying. Kinder Morgan’s existing Tennessee Gas Pipeline has waged a ten-year-long lawsuit in Schoharie County, NY, to have their taxes reduced. The county recently settled and granted the Texas-based corporation a significant PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) tax break. Rather than making millions, counties and towns along these pipelines’ routes will need to expend millions to repair local roads and bridges damaged by pipeline machinery and trucks. In the end, there will be no net benefit to local communities. The profit will go to the gas companies. The economic and quality-of-life losses
Want to DO something?
The Constitution and NED (Northeast Energy Direct) pipelines are being proposed at a critical time in America. We can either allow giant fossil-fuel companies to take our land and take advantage of us so they can send fracked gas overseas, or we can focus our efforts and investments on safe, clean, renewable energy, which helps—rather than hurts—our families and our communities.
Call or email Governor Cuomo. Tell him you oppose the Constitution and NED pipelines and that you support a transition to renewables now: 518-474-8390; https://www.governor.ny.gov/contact
Tell the DEC to DENY THE PERMITS for the Constitution pipeline: 518-402-8545; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com
Find out more about gas pipelines and how to stop them at: www.stopthepipeline.org
See all fracked-gas infrastructure in New York, both proposed and in operation at: www.youareherenymap.org