June 2018
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MCCS in the News
ME2 in the News

Monday, June 11, 2018

Nation of Change

"This project threatens some of our most basic American values; I think you'll find the people in Pennsylvania care a lot about public safety especially of their most vulnerable residents – children and seniors.

 

Sinkholes appeared on Lisa Drive in West Whiteland and Pennsylvania residents will come together just miles from those sinkholes to call on Gov. Tom Wolf to protect Pennsylvanians from what event organizers claim is Sunoco’s dangerous pipeline.

Pipeline foes plan rally Saturday in West Chester

Friday, June 08, 2018

Daily News Times

The No Mariner East! A Rally for Community Safety, will take place Saturday, June 9 at 3 p.m. at the Chester County Courthouse, 2 N. High St. in West Chester.

 

 

Two weeks ago, a judge with the Public Utilities Commission halted pipeline construction in West Whiteland Township, and the Sunoco Mariner East 1 pipeline from operating statewide, while writing that it “would be injurious to the public to not slow down this project.”

 

 

Sinkholes appeared on Lisa Drive in West Whiteland and Pennsylvania residents will come together just miles from those sinkholes to call on Gov. Tom Wolf to protect Pennsylvanians from what event organizers claim is Sunoco’s dangerous pipeline.

2 new incidents increase residents’ unease with Mariner East 2 work

Thursday, June 07, 2018

Delco Times

“The only reason we didn’t have a catastrophe in the last two weeks is because the pipeline was not operational,” said Eve Miari of Upper Providence and one of the founders of the Middletown Coalition for Community Safety, during Tuesday’s Delaware County Council agenda meeting. “It will be at some point.”

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Thursday, June 21, 2018

Delco Times

Delaware County Council moved a step forward in hiring a firm to do a risk analysis of two pipelines planned for Delaware County.

“I want to commend council with moving forward with the hazard analysis. I would like to emphasize the urgency of getting this done because we are in danger of having an active, large, hazardous pipeline running before we understand what the risks and the response to those risks ought to be. This does need to move forward quickly.”

-George Alexander, a Media resident.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Delco Times

We believe this proposed project’s public safety risks, its negative impacts on the economic well-being of our area, and its infringement on private property rights guaranteed under our constitutions are probably at the forefront of your concerns. We offer this information to help set the record straight.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Harrisburg, State Senator Andy Dinniman

State Senator Andy Dinniman, who brought an official complaint and emergency petition to halt all three pipelines before the PUC, called the decision a “mixed bag.”

“I don’t understand why the PUC would affirm some of the public safety issues at stake involving the construction of Mariner East 2 and 2X, but completely ignore others involving Mariner East 1,” Dinniman said. “After all, that’s the one that potentially presents the most immediate danger to my constituents.

“I’ll be thoroughly reviewing the final order with my staff and attorney as we explore any and all options moving forward,” he added. “The bottom line is our position has not changed. We continue to have very real and significant concerns regarding the stability of Mariner East 1 – an 87-year-old pipeline carrying highly volatile natural gas liquids within close proximity of schools, playgrounds, senior care facilities, neighborhoods, a library, shopping mall, and rail line, to name just a few.”

Thursday, June 14, 2018

Daily Times News

Opponents of the Mariner East 2 pipeline project got a split decision from the state Public Utility Commission Thursday.

The full agency upheld a ruling by a PUC administrative law judge ordering all construction on both Mariner East 2 and Mariner East 2x shut down in West Whiteland.

 

 

However the agency gave Sunoco the green light to resume transportation of gases on the older, existing Mariner East 1 pipeline.

 

 

The rulings come in response from a request from state Sen. Andy Dinniman, D-19 of West Whiteland, a fierce critic of the pipeline, who sought relief for his constituents from ongoing alleged health and safety threats posed by the pipelines.

 

Thursday, June 14, 2018

U.S. News

(Reuters) Pennsylvania's Public Utility Commission (PUC) voted on Thursday to allow Energy Transfer Partners LP's (ETP) Sunoco Mariner East 1 natural gas liquids pipe to return to service.

The PUC suspended operations on Mariner East on March 7 for safety concerns after sinkholes were discovered near the pipeline.

All five PUC commissioners voted to allow Mariner East 1 to resume service. Three of the five commissioners, however, also voted to prevent ETP from working on the Mariner East 2 and 2X pipelines in West Whiteland Township.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

State Impact

Construction on Sunoco’s Mariner East 2 pipeline project will remain shut down for now, but Mariner East 1 can re-start.

The state’s Public Utility Commission on Thursday modified an administrative law judge’s order that stopped work on Mariner East 2 and operation of Mariner East 1 in Chester County until the PUC could assure its safety.

The commission voted 3-2 to approve PUC Chairman Gladys Brown’s motion that there is “no new credible evidence” that operation of ME1 “poses a clear and present danger to life or property in West Whiteland Township;” and that the commission needs more information from Sunoco before deciding whether ME 2 construction can “safely re-start” in the township.

Thursday, June 14, 2018

WSKG

 In a potentially groundbreaking legal action, an environmental group is suing Sunoco Pipeline for violating state and federal clean water laws during the construction of the Mariner East pipelines while not having a permit that could have allowed it to control discharges of waste water.

Pennsylvania-based Delaware Riverkeeper Network says Sunoco failed to obtain a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit which it is required to have if it wants to discharge pollutants into waterways.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Food & Water Watch

 In advance of a critical vote that could determine the fate of the contentious Mariner East 2 pipeline, a new report questions the impartiality of several Public Utilities Commissioners.

The PUC could make a pivotal decision as soon as tomorrow about re-starting construction on the highly controversial pipeline. The new report reveals startling and troubling connections between the commissioners and an array of fossil fuel interests, including the very company that stands to gain from their decision.

The report from Public Accountability Initiative shows that 4 of the 5 commissioners have substantial ties to the fracking industry. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

State Impact

Delaware Riverkeeper Network filed a complaint in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against Sunoco Pipeline L.P. for what the Riverkeeper said is a failure to obtain a National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System Permit for the Mariner East 2 pipeline project.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

State Impact

Delaware Riverkeeper says Mariner East 2 construction has broken state and federal water standards

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Energy News Network

CLIMATE: Climate change is a growing concern for the nation’s top companies, beating out other economic concerns, according to an analysis of earnings calls. (Bloomberg)

PIPELINES:
• A Pennsylvania lawmaker who is challenging the Mariner East pipeline project asks state regulators to post all public comments related to the case online. (Natural Gas Intelligencer)

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Delco Times

The text to Rosemary Chiavetta, secretary Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, read:

 

 

“The Borough Council of Swarthmore strongly urges the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) to uphold the suspension of Sunoco’s Mariner East project as directed by Administrative Law Judge Elizabeth Barnes in the above referenced matter until the conditions of her May 22, 2018 Order are satisfied. The judge’s grant of Interim Emergency Relief is crucial to protecting public health and safety.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

The Heron's Nest

It's no longer just some residents who are raising their voices against Sunoco's Mariner East 2 pipeline.

 

Last night Middletown Council joined the chorus, pushed in part by last week's incident in which a contracting crew for Aqua Pa. actually struck the pipeline while doing main work. The problem is that they hit the pipeline at 6 feet, when Sunoco had told them it was buried at 9 feet.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

WSKG

“They have now been confronted with a new crisis,” said state Sen. Andy Dinniman, a Chester County Democrat who is an outspoken opponent of the project. “If Sunoco told them nine feet and they hit a pipe, that means the whole OneCall system is potentially compromised, which is an inherent danger to everyone including the workers of these other companies.”

Dinniman said the pipeline strike makes it more likely that the PUC, which is responsible for pipeline safety in Pennsylvania, will uphold at least some of Judge Barnes’s order granting his emergency petition for construction to be halted until officials confirm the line’s safety in the township.

“I think it makes it very difficult for them to totally rule against me,” he said in an interview during the rally. “It’s a moment of truth for the five commissioners of the PUC.”

Monday, June 11, 2018

Desmog

“This project has made many of us in this community and across Pennsylvania unlikely pipeline activists,” said Ginny Marcille-Kerslake, a resident of West Whiteland Township who lived across the street from a Sunoco drill site. “Opposition to this project has brought together parents, grandparents, neighbors, legislators, emergency responders, business owners, school boards, Republicans, and Democrats alike.”

Monday, June 11, 2018

Daily Local 

While the company touts the project as saving a way of life for those employed, residents see it as a threat to their own.

 

 

They point to questions about Sunoco’s ability to properly build the pipeline and operate it safely. They point to persistent problems with runoff, a byproduct of the digging that comes with building a pipeline.

 

 

They believe the state has been lax, first in allowing the routing of such a project through densely populated neighborhoods, literally running right next to schools and senior centers, and basically absent as one problem after another has popped up during construction.

 

 

The state shut down construction on the pipeline after sinkholes were discovered in a West Whiteland neighborhood.

Monday, June 11, 2018

Eyes on the Ties

The PPUC’s decision may be tainted by conflicts of interest among commissioners, a majority of whom have ties to Pennsylvania’s oil and gas industry, including to Sunoco. 

Monday, June 11, 2018

Chester County Journal

Sunday, June 10, 2018

State Impact

Opponents of the Mariner East pipelines urged Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf and the Public Utility Commission on Saturday to permanently shut down the troubled project, extending a current halt in one Chester County township to the entire 350-mile line. 

Saturday, June 09, 2018

WGAL News 8

Residents, environmentalists and members of coalitions took to the Chester county courthouse steps with signs calling for a permanent shutdown of the Mariner East 2 Pipeline, which runs through parts of Cumberland, Dauphin, Lebanon and Lancaster counties.

Those at the anti-pipeline rally said the 350-mile pipeline carrying volatile liquids creates environmental and property right concerns-- but the biggest concern is safety.

Saturday, June 09, 2018

Delco Times

With voices united, and protest signs held high, more than 300 demonstrators Saturday called for a full, complete and permanent stop to construction of the Sunoco Mariner East pipelines.

 

 

The No Mariner East! Rally for Community Safety was held Saturday afternoon at the historic Chester County Courthouse. The event was organized by several local grassroots organizations.

Rally Against Mariner East Pipeline To Be Held In West Chester

Friday, June 08, 2018

Patch

Protesters will gather at the Chester County Courthouse to take a stand against the controversial Mariner East 2 Pipeline. 

Several local leaders, activists, and landowners are joining together to host a rally in West Chester against the controversial Mariner East 2 Pipeline.

The event will take place at 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 9 on the steps of the Chester County Courthouse.

Friday, June 08, 2018

The Heron's Nest

...But here is the odd part - and the part that no doubt sends shivers down the spine of residents.

 

Aqua says it was told the pipeline was buried at 9 feet, but they say they hit the line at just 6 feet.

 

Now the state, Sunoco and others are trying to figure out how this happened.

Thursday, June 07, 2018

DRAGONPIPE DIARY

...Whatever the error was, the lesson is that errors and failures do happen, and if a company is building a pipeline to transport extremely dangerous materials, it must choose a route that will minimize the danger to areas of dense population. Otherwise, a minor leak could become a major catastrophe.

That is exactly what Sunoco has failed to do. The company chose the Dragonpipe’s route for its own convenience. It followed the route of an existing line (now called Mariner East 1) that intentionally went near or through population centers. That made sense in the 1930s (when the original line was built) because it was designed to deliver gasoline and fuel oil to those centers. Today, however, that route is perhaps the worst possible choice for the Dragonpipe, which carries highly explosive materials that should be kept as far from people as possible.

Officials: Water main contractor struck Mariner East 2 in Delaware County

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

State Impact

Sunoco’s Mariner East 2 pipeline was struck by a crew installing a water main last month outside homes in Middletown, Delaware County, company and state officials confirmed on Wednesday.

 

The incident raises questions about what Sunoco told the contractor about the depth of the pipeline. After several shutdowns by regulators and many violations of environmental laws, it also fuels accusations that the company is building the multibillion-dollar line with little regard for regulation or public safety.

Chesco Commissioners urge PUC to stand against pipeline projects

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

Daily Local News

Commissioner Kathi Cozzone said that pipeline construction is a major issue for residents.

 

 

“Sunoco’s lack of transparency hampers the county emergency departments from doing their jobs,” Cozzone said, Wednesday.

 

 

Commissioner Michelle Kichline said that the county has attempted to gain information several times, without success.

 

 

“It’s helpful information, it should be shared,” Kichline said. “It’s adding to a layer of mistrust.”

 

 

Commissioner Terence Farrell said the county wants to protect its citizens while it is being “stonewalled” by Sunoco.

Chester County commissioners slam Sunoco for ‘appalling’ lack of pipeline information

Tuesday, June 05, 2018

State Impact

Letter urges PUC to uphold judge's order halting Mariner East construction.

Chester County commissioners slammed Sunoco Pipeline on Tuesday, accusing it of withholding emergency planning information from officials of towns where the Mariner East 2 pipeline will run, prioritizing profit over safety, and creating mistrust among residents who fear for their safety if the pipeline leaks or explodes.

School district officials turn up heat on Wolf over pipeline concerns

Saturday, June 02, 2018

Delco Times

The superintendents of both the West Chester Area School District and Downingtown Area School District wrote to Wolf almost two months ago, but have indicated to Dinniman that they have yet to receive a response.

 

 

“The bottom line is our schools, parents, students, teachers, and staff deserve clear answers about the risks associated with this pipeline project and what to do in the event of an emergency,” said Dinniman, one of the project’s most strident critics. “The fact that we still can’t get straight answers about potentially life-and-death scenarios from our state government, including the very agency responsible for pipeline safety, the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, is extremely alarming. One has to wonder whether they have answers.”

Pipeline foes ratchet up heat on Gov. Wolf

Saturday, June 02, 2018

Daily Local News

Two Chester County school districts with schools located near the Mariner East pipeline project have expressed concerns regarding the project’s safety and appealed to Gov. Tom Wolf for a comprehensive independent risk assessment, according to state Sen. Andy Dinniman, D-19 of West Whiteland.

Dinniman vows to fight Sunoco’s appeal of pipelines shutdown

Saturday, June 02, 2018

Delco News Network

State Sen. Andy Dinniman said he would fight Sunoco’s attempts to appeal a Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission judge’s order to halt operation of the Mariner East 1 pipeline and prohibit construction of the Mariner East 2 and Mariner East 2X pipelines in West Whiteland Township.

“This fight is far from over,” said Dinniman, D-19. “And Sunoco’s response is a further indication of just how out of touch they still are. The judge’s decision and its potentially wide-reaching impacts on the pipeline regulatory environment in Pennsylvania is the result of Sunoco’s own stubborn refusal to do its due diligence in respecting homeowners, public safety and our local property and environmental rights.

Sunoco urges PUC to overturn judge’s order halting pipeline construction in Chester County

Saturday, June 02, 2018

State Impact

The judge ordered the PUC to conduct further study on all three lines to ensure that there would be no “catastrophic event” at Mariner East 1, which carries natural gas liquids. 

She also strongly criticized Sunoco, saying it had rushed ahead with the project in an “apparent prioritization of profit over the best engineering practices,” and had failed to give the public detailed instructions on how to respond to any leak of gases from the line. 

In his own brief, Dinniman urged the PUC to uphold Judge Barnes’ ruling, saying she was right to identify an “imminent risk to the public” from ME2 construction.

How Sunoco's Mariner East pipeline is affecting real estate prices in Pa.'s Chester and Delaware Counties

Friday, June 01, 2018

Philadelphia Inquirer

Two months after Angela and Matthew Cibelli moved into their family’s dream home in Uwchlan Township in 2016, a representative of Sunoco Pipeline LP stopped by their house to outline upcoming construction plans for the Mariner East project.

“What construction?” replied Angela, unaware that the previous owner had signed an easement allowing Sunoco to occupy their backyard to build two new underground pipelines across their Marchwood property.

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“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” ― Margaret Mead

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