Sister Claire spoke at the I Love Mountains Rally hosted by Kentuckians for the Commonwealth on the Capitol steps in Frankfort on Feb. 12, 2014.
New Pioneers Statement Regarding the Proposed Bluegrass Pipeline
New Pioneers for a Sustainable Future is founded on the premise that a sustainable future for Washington County depends upon a healthy environment, a vibrant local economy, a government attentive to local concerns, and the conviction that we do not inherit the land from our ancestors but borrow it from our children.
In recent weeks we have discovered that the Williams Company, a large out-of-state pipeline company with a terrible safety and reporting record, is threatening to use their presumed "right of eminent domain" to force unwilling landowners to allow a high-volume, high pressure pipeline through central Kentucky to transport NATURAL GAS LIQUIDS-- a by-product of the "fracking" process used to extract natural gas in states north and east of us -- to the Gulf coast. According to the preliminary map of the route, this proposed pipeline would run extremely close along our western border in Nelson County, and some Washington and Marion County landowners have also been approached.
Why is New Pioneers against the pipeline? Kentucky has had pipelines for years, but this would be the first to carry highly toxic natural gas liquids (NGLs) through our state. Currently, Kentucky has no regulations for this kind of pipeline which means that, among other concerns, there is no set-back rule mandating that is must be placed a "safe" distance from a home. The NGLs in the Bluegrass Pipeline is intended for Louisiana where it will be refined for export, primarily to Asia where it will be used to manufacture plastics. All pipelines eventually leak. When this one breaks or leaks, it will emit toxic vapors into the air and leech toxic liquids into the soil and groundwater. IF it can be cleaned up, who will do it? Kentucky gets all the risk, responsibility, and mess with none of the benefit. Once Williams gets its right-of-way, they may be able to place subsequent pipelines within it without the consent of the landowner.
A few landowners will receive a one-time payment for rights -of-way. There may be a few temporary construction jobs if this pipeline is allowed. But the damage will be with us for generations after the pipeline company has left Kentucky. It will imperil our vision of a clean, safe, and economically diverse community.
Therefore, it is clear to us that this pipeline is a bad deal for
Kentucky. We implore you to join us in stopping the Bluegrass
Pipeline before it's too late. Please call or email Governor Beshear
today, using the information located at http://www.stopbluegrasspipeline.us