28 COUNTIES DRINK OUR WATER, WASH THEIR BABIES, GROW THEIR FOOD

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Looking out from the top of Polly’s Garden
I could barely see the Buffalo
3rd day straight of the end of summer’s rain
wondering where the lifetimes go

This ain’t the first time
our land has been forsaken
it’s what this fine nation
was founded on

If I look close enough
I can still see the blood on my hands
forgive me God,
I’m ready to steward your land

28 counties drink our water
wash their babies, grow their food
from these headwaters it flows ten thousand miles
ain’t no time to sit and brood

‘Cause we got trouble in the mountain valley
this is bigger than our backyard
this is raping all that we’ve come to preserve
time to join hands both near and far

Nelson County, Franklin and Montgomery,
Rockbridge River, the James and the New
protect our lifeline, keep our waters pristine
we owe our children, we owe it to you

This ain’t about money
it goes much deeper
our bodies are water
the rivers our veins

Our hearts are wider
than the deepest lakes in this land
let’s stand for something
let’s stake our claims

From West Virginia
to Pittsylvania
let’s stretch our arms
longer than their line

We are caretakers
there’s nothing here you can touch
our crystal palace
is nothing you can buy

So drink deeply
and feel the sustenance
let Gods love
pour over you

We’re being called upon
there’s nothing greater than this
raise your hands and ask what you can do
raise your hands and ask what you can do

Raise our hands
it’s up to me and you

http://www.wsls.com/story/26636386/bigmama-joy

Excellent Presentations by Preserve the NRV on the Mt Valley Pipeline

This is the video of the Montgomery County Board of Supervisors meeting on September 22. Wil and Angela Stanton were on the agenda with Elizabeth McCommon to inform the supervisors about the Mountain Valley Pipeline and the negative impacts it will have on Montgomery County and the NRV. Elizabeth’s presentation begins 6 minutes into the video and Wil and Angela’s presentation begins at just under the 16 minute mark. After the presentation, you will also be able to watch comments from concerned citizens (beginning at the 40 minute mark) who were able to share their perspectives with the board.

 

Our First Newsletter!

Our first newsletter was delivered to many of you last night!

If you use gmail, you may need to check your promotions tab and approve the address in order to have it sent directly to your inbox. You may also want to check your spam folder if you use a different email server.

Here is a copy for those of you who have not signed up for the newsletter here on our website or given us your request at an event.

PRESERVE FLOYD: CITIZENS PRESERVING FLOYD COUNTY NEWSLETTER SEPTEMBER 2014

Thanks so much for your patience with Preserve Floyd: Citizens Preserving Floyd Countyas we compiled this newsletter for you. There’s been a lot to keep up with and we appreciate that you’ve kept yourself informed through our website, our Facebook page and each other in the meantime. We intend to have updates via email more frequently as we move forward.

The environment is on everyone’s mind right now as the largest ever “People’s Climate March” strode through NYC and the issue entered into the dialogue in a more urgent manner. The Mountain Valley pipeline is the dragon standing on OUR mountain right now, and it is its own beast—but it’s also part of climate change. It’s intended to carry fracked gas and it deserves to be seen as a part of this larger issue. As we come together and agree to work towards sustainable energy solutions and to be environmental advocates for the continued health and well-being of our community, we also commit to work together to protect this land that we all love.

That means: STOP THE PIPELINE.

Here are some important upcoming events and we’ll share more as we create more:

  • On September 28, Sustain Floyd will be presenting the film “Gasland 2 .” Preserve Floyd will be represented there to share information, answer questions and educate ourselves and each other. Doors will open at 6 PM for food and conversation. A donation of $5 is requested for the movie and an additional $5 for the dinner The film will start around 6:30 to 6:45 PM.
  • Joe Waldo, a lawyer specializing in eminent domain, will visit Floyd on October 14. You can come see him—and ask questions – at the Floyd County High School at 7 PM.
  • Representatives from EQT will be attending the Floyd County Board of Supervisors meeting on October 28 at 7 PM. The meeting will be held at the Floyd County High School Auditorium.
  • Between now and October 28, citizens are encouraged to come to the Floyd Artisan’s Market on Fridays from 5-7 PM to create signs, sing songs and practice for the spectacle we’d like to present to EQT as they roll into town.

For those of you who want to help, we want you to know that there’s a lot you CAN do to help! We are just figuring out (as quickly as possible!) what, where, when and how. So keep asking and keep offering and keep sharing information.

One thing EVERYONE can do is to talk to your neighbors.

Pass this newsletter along. Keep updated on Facebook and share links, graphics and good connections. Join the Mountain-Valley Pipeline or the Virginians Against Pipelines discussion groups and engage. Social media is helping this movement tremendously. And if you know of landowners who might not have access to the internet, print out a copy of our landowner’s handbook or any other pertinent online information.

And write letters! We have a new “Letters to the Editor Toolkit” on our website that will help with that. Coming soon: A similar toolkit to assist with writing letters to politicians. The more the better. The more personal the better. And letters—actual letters—make much more of an impression than emails these days.

The very deepest of appreciation to each and every one of you who have attended community meetings, signed petitions, lent a hand at events and are committed to keeping yourself informed, active and participating. It is inspiring and encouraging to live in a community where so many people want to be involved.

Confluence: Water and the Pipeline

BY FRED FIRST

Many of you attended the showing of “To the Last Drop,” the locally-filmed Floyd County water documentary shown at the Eco-village on September 14.The ideas and interviews for that film started in the summer of 2013 long before there was any knowledge of Mountain Valley’s proposed interstate pipeline.So it was well timed that Partnership for Floyd’s efforts culminated with the premier showing at just the time that our water–and that of all impacted and down-stream counties–was rising to the top of Preserve Floyd’s concerns.

We began to consider the impact of natural gas pipelines on the water across more than 800 miles of landscape threatened by the combined length of Mountain Valley and the Atlantic Coast Pipelines.

While our attention still resonates with voices, places, hopes and concerns from the movie, let me just say a bit more about water as we continue to be vigilant against any forces or agencies that put tomorrow’s water at risk.

Towards that end, I’ll share a “this I believe” kind of statement I wrote recently in the process of trying to distill my thoughts:

Ninety-five percent of Floyd County residents get their water from wells. From an injury to any one, other neighbors can suffer. So we are vigilant to protect our ground and surface waters today, even as we also look ahead. Adequate clean water in our county is a right, far into the future, that we are not willing to put at risk. And as we care for the water that falls on this plateau, we are also mindful of its quality as it passes through communities between here and the Gulf or the Atlantic. Ultimately, water is a shared necessity to life that we care for together across space and across time.

Our actions to insure that our waters are protected today become a legacy of reliable water for generations to come. Water, adequate and clean, is a right, not a commodity. We are committed to the water commons, and resist any threats to it, from whatever source they might come.

Consider carefully these ten water-commons principles. They guide us towards sustained water stewardship that we stand FOR. The current frenzy of unsustainable over-building of natural gas wells, holding ponds and pipeline construction right-of-ways are not consistent with these water principles, and represent values, purposes, methods and ends that we stand AGAINST.

 

Confluence: Water and the Pipeline

Many of you attended the showing of”To the Last Drop“–the locally-filmed Floyd County water documentary shown at the Eco-village on September 14. The ideas and interviews for that film started in the summer of 2013 long before there was any knowledge of Mountain Valley’s proposed interstate pipeline.

So it was well timed that Partnership for Floyd’s efforts culminated with the premier showing at just the time that our water–and that of all impacted and down-stream counties–was rising to the top of Preserve Floyd’s concerns. We began to consider the impact of natural gas pipelines on the water across more than 800 miles of landscape threatened by the combined length of Mountain Valley and the Atlantic Coast Pipelines.

While our attention still resonates with voices, places, hopes and concerns from the movie, let me just say a bit more about water as we continue to be vigilant against any forces or agencies that put tomorrow’s water at risk. Towards that end, I’ll share a “this I believe” kind of statement I wrote recently in the process of trying to distill my thoughts:

Ninety-five percent of Floyd County residents get their water from wells. From an injury to any one, other neighbors can suffer. So we are vigilant to protect our ground and surface waters today, even as we also look ahead. Adequate clean water in our county is a right, far into the future, that we are not willing to put at risk. And as we care for the water that falls on this plateau, we are also mindful of its quality as it passes through communities between here and the Gulf or the Atlantic. Ultimately, water is a shared necessity to life that we care for together across space and across time.

Our actions to insure that our waters are protected today become a legacy of reliable water for the next generations. Water, adequate and clean, is a right, not a commodity. We are committed to the water commons, and resist any threats to it, from whatever source they might come.

Consider thoughtfully these ten water-commons principles. They guide us towards a dedication to continued water stewardship that we stand FOR. The current frenzy of over-building of natural gas wells, holding ponds and pipeline construction right-of-ways are not consistent with these water principles, and represent values, purposes, methods and ends that we stand AGAINST.

Pass it On...
If you find any resonance with this commitment to stand our ground for our water, please share it with your social media contacts, friends, neighbors, churches and organizations. 

Rights of Mother Earth

Preamble

We, the peoples and nations of Earth:

considering that we are all part of Mother Earth, an indivisible, living community of interrelated and interdependent beings with a common destiny;

gratefully acknowledging that Mother Earth is the source of life, nourishment and learning and provides everything we need to live well;

recognizing that the capitalist system and all forms of depredation, exploitation, abuse and contamination have caused great destruction, degradation and disruption of Mother Earth, putting life as we know it today at risk through phenomena such as climate change;

convinced that in an interdependent living community it is not possible to recognize the rights of only human beings without causing an imbalance within Mother Earth;

affirming that to guarantee human rights it is necessary to recognize and defend the rights of Mother Earth and all beings in her and that there are existing cultures, practices and laws that do so;

conscious of the urgency of taking decisive, collective action to transform structures and systems that cause climate change and other threats to Mother Earth;

proclaim this Universal Declaration of the Rights of Mother Earth, and call on the General Assembly of the United Nation to adopt it, as a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations of the world, and to the end that every individual and institution takes responsibility for promoting through teaching, education, and consciousness raising, respect for the rights recognized in this Declaration and ensure through prompt and progressive measures and mechanisms, national and international, their universal and effective recognition and observance among all peoples and States in the world.

Article 1. Mother Earth

(1)  Mother Earth is a living being.

(2)  Mother Earth is a unique, indivisible, self-regulating community of interrelated beings that sustains, contains and reproduces all beings.

(3)  Each being is defined by its relationships as an integral part of Mother Earth.

(4)  The inherent rights of Mother Earth are inalienable in that they arise from the same source as existence.

(5)  Mother Earth and all beings are entitled to all the inherent rights recognized in this Declaration without distinction of any kind, such as may be made between organic and inorganic beings, species, origin, use to human beings, or any other status.

(6)  Just as human beings have human rights, all other beings also have rights which are specific to their species or kind and appropriate for their role and function within the communities within which they exist.

(7)  The rights of each being are limited by the rights of other beings and any conflict between their rights must be resolved in a way that maintains the integrity, balance and health of Mother Earth.

Article 2. Inherent Rights of Mother Earth

(1)  Mother Earth and all beings of which she is composed have the following inherent rights:

(a)  the right to life and to exist;

(b)  the right to be respected;

(c)  the right to regenerate its bio-capacity and to continue its vital cycles and processes free from human disruptions;

(d)  the right to maintain its identity and integrity as a distinct, self-regulating and interrelated being;

(e)  the right to water as a source of life;

(f)   the right to clean air;

(g)  the right to integral health;

(h)   the right to be free from contamination, pollution and toxic or radioactive waste;

(i)    the right to not have its genetic structure modified or disrupted in a manner that threatens it integrity or vital and healthy functioning;

(j)    the right to full and prompt restoration the violation of the rights recognized in this Declaration caused by human activities;

(2)  Each being has the right to a place and to play its role in Mother Earth for her harmonious functioning.

(3)  Every being has the right to wellbeing and to live free from torture or cruel treatment by human beings.

Article 3. Obligations of human beings to Mother Earth

(1)  Every human being is responsible for respecting and living in harmony with Mother Earth.

(2)  Human beings, all States, and all public and private institutions must:

(a)  act in accordance with the rights and obligations recognized in this Declaration;

(b)  recognize and promote the full implementation and enforcement of the rights and obligations recognized in this Declaration;

(c)  promote and participate in learning, analysis, interpretation and communication about how to live in harmony with Mother Earth in accordance with this Declaration;

(d)  ensure that the pursuit of human wellbeing contributes to the wellbeing of Mother Earth, now and in the future;

(e)  establish and apply effective norms and laws for the defence, protection and conservation of the rights of Mother Earth;

(f)   respect, protect, conserve and where necessary, restore the integrity, of the vital ecological cycles, processes and balances of Mother Earth;

(g)  guarantee that the damages caused by human violations of the inherent rights recognized in this Declaration are rectified and that those responsible are held accountable for restoring the integrity and health of Mother Earth;

(h)  empower human beings and institutions to defend the rights of Mother Earth and of all beings;

(i)    establish precautionary and restrictive measures to prevent human activities from causing species extinction, the destruction of ecosystems or the disruption of ecological cycles;

(j)    guarantee peace and eliminate nuclear, chemical and biological weapons;

(k)  promote and support practices of respect for Mother Earth and all beings, in accordance with their own cultures, traditions and customs;

(l)    promote economic systems that are in harmony with Mother Earth and in accordance with the rights recognized in this Declaration. 

Article 4. Definitions

(1)  The term “being” includes ecosystems, natural communities, species and all other natural entities which exist as part of Mother Earth.

(2)  Nothing in this Declaration restricts the recognition of other inherent rights of all beings or specified beings.


http://pwccc.wordpress.com/programa/

 

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Pipeline PickupSticks

How does the newly-supported Atlantic Coast Pipeline venture change the game, if at all, with regard to Mt Valley?

Can ACP provide markets once envisioned for MVP, and therefore make MVP unnecessary?

Running parallel to the coast, you have to entertain the notion some of the billions of cubic feet of gas is headed to LNG conversion and export from Atlantic ports. Read:

New pipelines are for fracking and LNG export

pipelines340And here’s a thought, no extra charge, for those who would make life miserable for as many Americans as possible: there will be places where two or more large pipelines necessarily cross paths.

Like, maybe, Houston. What a mess of pickup sticks!

What terror and damage it would make to detonate just such a junction near a large urban area.

 

 

Water Movie Event at Floyd EcoVillage, Sept 14, 4 PM

Come share with your neighbors the premier showing of a newly released, independent documentary about Floyd County’s precious water resources. The film titled “To the Last Drop” was created and filmed right here in Floyd, starring some of our local water experts. Fred First, Mark Sowers, Jeff Walker, Mark Grim, Lydeanna Martin, Dennis Dove and Jane Cundiff star in the movie and Bernie Coveney did the music. Professional videographers from Virginia Tech, Chris Risch and Grazia Apolinares produced this poignant movie that is not only educational but visually and emotionally inspirational.

This premier showing will be presented for FREE at the Floyd EcoVillage on September 14 at 4:00. The event is being arranged and supported by Partnership for Floyd with hopes of getting good community involvement in preserving our streams, wetlands, and wells that are the source of life here in Floyd County.

Lydeana Martin will introduce the documentary with pertinent and useful details about Floyd’s water supply. After the movie there will be a question and answer panel discussion with our local experts.

Local songwriters Michael and Kari Kovick, and Erica Joy Rising will perform for us.

Representatives from Citizens Preserving Floyd County will also be available to respond to questions about the proposed gas pipeline through our county and to describe how our water and wetlands could be affected.

Information tables and handouts in the lobby will be available for those who want to learn more. Floyd fresh water, popcorn, art displays and good conversation will be enjoyed, all for free.

Bring your neighbors, friends, school-age children and your questions. Join together for this community event to protect our precious, shared water resources in Floyd County.

Local artists are invited to share their works related to water. Bring your paintings, crafts and photographs or have your children display their best water art for all to enjoy.

Please email Jane Cundiff at PartnershipForFloyd@gmail.com if you have large pieces of art to display or for any other questions.

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Natural Gas: A Green Bridge to Hell

Not my title, but one that suits. Naomi Oreskes is known to me from the brilliant Merchants of Doubt on the truth-management practices “from tobacco to global warming.”

I’ve had this realization that the same folks behind horizontal fracturing’s economics, “science” and the proliferation of fracked wells being forced on landscapes and communities across the east are the same folks who bought their own scientists who told us cigarettes were really good for us.

The current natural gas truth-spinners are the same people who took the tops off mountains and put them into creeks that had names, where people with names once lived normal lives.

The proposed MV pipeline that Floyd County would suffer is part of a legacy. We’re focused, rightly, on the symptom of that legacy that might change the lives of many of us, not for the better.

But we need to be mindful of the spin in this “green bridge” so that we don’t let our neighbors buy any snake oil.

Rather a lot of Diigo annotations from Green Bridge to Hell pulled from the longer TomGram article are posted below:

When looked at in a clear-eyed way, natural gas isn’t going to turn out to be the fossil-fuel equivalent of a wonder drug that will cure the latest climate disease. Quite the opposite: its exploitation will actually increase the global use of fossil fuels and pump more greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere, while possibly suppressing the development of actual renewable alternatives.
Different studies of this sort tend to yield quite different results with a high margin for error, but many conclude that when natural gas replaces petroleum in transportation or heating oil in homes, the greenhouse gas benefits are slim to none.

According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, there were 342,000 gas wells in the United States in 2000; by 2010, there were over 510,000, and nearly all of this increase was driven by shale-gas development — that is, by fracking. This represents a huge increase in the potential pathways for methane leakage directly into the atmosphere. (It also represents a huge increase in potential sources of groundwater contamination, but that’s a subject for another post.)

There have been enormous disagreements among scientists and industry representatives over methane leakage rates, but experts calculate that leakage must be kept below 3% for gas to represent an improvement over coal in electricity generation, and below 1% for gas to improve over diesel and gasoline in transportation. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) currently estimates average leakage rates at 1.4%, but quite a few experts dispute that figure. One study published in 2013, based on atmospheric measurements over gas fields in Utah, found leakage rates as high as 6%-11%.

But recently the Wall Street Journal reported that state officials in North Dakota would be pressing for new regulations because flaring rates there are running around 30%. In the month of April alone, $50 million dollars of natural gas was burned off, completely wasted. The article was discussing shale oil wells, not shale gas ones, but it suggests that, when it comes to controlling flaring, there’s evidence the store is not being adequately minded. (At present, there are no federal regulations at all on flaring.) As long as gas is cheap, the economic incentives to avoid waste are obviously insufficient.

Meanwhile, global fossil fuel production and consumption are rising. A recent article by the business editor of the British Telegraph describes a frenzy of fossil fuel production that may be leading to a new financial bubble. The huge increase in natural gas production is, in reality, helping to keep the price of such energy lower, discouraging efficiency and making it more difficult for renewables to compete.

We’ve all heard about the Keystone XL Pipeline through which Canada proposes to ship oil from the Alberta tar sands to the U.S. Gulf Coast, and from there to the rest of the world. Few people, however, are aware that the U.S. has also become a net exporter of coal and is poised to become a gas exporter as well. Gas imports have fallen steadily since 2007, while exports have risen, and several U.S. gas companies are actively seeking federal and state approvals for the building of expanded gas export facilities.

All of the available scientific evidence suggests that greenhouse gas emissions must peak relatively soon and then fall dramatically over the next 50 years, if not sooner, if we are to avoid the most damaging and disruptive aspects of climate change. Yet we are building, or contemplating building, pipelines and export facilities that will contribute to increased fossil fuel use around the globe, ensuring further increases in emissions during the crucial period when they need to be dramatically decreasing.

Certain forms of infrastructure also effectively preclude others. Once you have built a city, you can’t use the same land for agriculture. Historians call this the “infrastructure trap.” The aggressive development of natural gas, not to mention tar sands, and oil in the melting Arctic, threaten to trap us into a commitment to fossil fuels that may be impossible to escape before it is too late. Animals are lured into traps by the promise of food. Is the idea of short-term cuts in greenhouse gas emissions luring us into the trap of long-term failure?

The fossil fuel industry and their allies have spent the past 20 years attacking environmentalists and climate scientists as extremists, alarmists, and hysterics. Their publicists have portrayed them as hair-shirt wearing, socialist watermelons (green on the outside, red on the inside) who relish suffering, kill jobs, and want everyone to freeze in the dark. Extremists do exist in the environmental movement as everywhere else, but they represent a tiny faction of the community of people concerned about climate change, and they are virtually nonexistent in the scientific community. (Put it this way: if there is a hair-shirt wearing climate scientist, I have not met her.)

Sometimes you can fight fire with fire, but the evidence suggests that this isn’t one of those times. Under current conditions, the increased availability and decreased price of natural gas are likely to lead to an increase in U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. Preliminary data from 2013 suggest that that is already occurring. And global emissions are, of course, continuing to increase as well.

Natural gas is not the bridge to clean energy; it’s the road to more climate change.

Montgomery County Board of Supervisors meeting Monday Night, Aug 25, 7:15 PM

We strongly encourage Montgomery County residents who are concerned about the proposed Mountain Valley Pipeline to attend the Board of Supervisors meeting tomorrow night at 7:15 in Christiansburg. If you have information to share, it is likely to be welcome considering the lack of communication between EQT and Next Era and local government. In Floyd, most of what our local government knows about the proposed project is based on what they have received from citizens of Floyd County.

If you have a written statement, it’s a good idea to bring a copy for them to keep so that it can be entered into the public record.

“Public meetings are the second and fourth Monday of each month at the Montgomery County Government Center, 755 Roanoke St. in Christiansburg. Closed sessions begin at 6 p.m. if needed. Open sessions begin at 7:15 p.m. Citizens are invited to attend and allowed to speak at each meeting.”

http://www.montgomerycountyva.gov/content/1144/100/191/default.aspx