A Future Dependent on Hydrofracked “Natural” Gas and Its Pipeline Infrastructure

Maybe some see it differently and maybe some of you are not part of the opposition to the Competitive Power Ventures (CPV) Valley Energy Center project planned for construction in the Town of Wawayanda and City of Middletown, Orange County.  Maybe you don’t know or care about the Millennium Pipeline or Minisink Compressor Station.  You may perhaps prefer not to know.  But this is shared in the hope that you just might care enough about yourselves, our children and our country to be informed about what is presented here.

Knowledgeable people came together recently to discuss not only CPV’s proposed hydrofracked “natural” gas power plant planned to be built in the Slate Hill, Orange County, that will pollute the air we all breath, jeopardize our water resources and adversely impact the land and food supply, but to share how this project fits into a much larger PLAN by the Venture Capital, Gas and Energy Industry to ensure OUR Dependence on hydrofracked “natural” gas for at least our lifetime and maybe that of our children’s  lifetime, and about “Money” to be made by a few!

The window of Fracked Gas production is at best 92 years depending on whom you talk to and how much is exported to other parts of the world, which is the primary objective of the industry.  Why, because exporting the gas will allow the “industry” to control supply and the pricing and, perhaps, make hydrofracked gas, regardless of the health and environmental hazards, a “little” less expensive than fuel oil so it is “competitive” and “justifiable”; but it will never be  “competitive” relative to Wind, Water or Solar energy generation, in terms of emissions or otherwise!  And, the “footprint” for zero emission energy production is FAR LESS destructive, costly and intrusive.

That said; CPV’s proposed plant is only a small part of a much larger picture.  There are several Gas Pipelines, which will transport Hydrofracked Gas from the Marcellus Shale region and other states, despite the fact that many of the wells  especially in PA are already showing signs of being exhausted, and that is why there is much attention on the Southern Tier and Lower Western portion of NYS; the Delaware Valley and Catskill region south to New Jersey, where the “Industry” is slated to construct 100,000 new wells; an estimated 8.9% of which will leak and contaminate our water resources according to the “Solutions Project” led by Dr. Mark Jacobson of Stanford University and other noted scholars from other institutions, (Cornell University and Pepacton Institute).  That is also why the Gas Industry Conglomerates are buying up “Water Resources” in many parts of the country so they will have a monopoly on potable water as well – T. Boone Pickens comes to mind.

Nevertheless, the reason, it is believed that it was so important that the Millennium Pipeline construct their COMPRESSOR STATION in the Town of MINISINK, instead of locating this facility in a less dense residentially populated location, which they could easily have done; the Minisink location has over two hundred rural residential homes, is because the location of the Minisink Compressor Station will become the HUB for the $430-450 Million NYMarc Pipeline, which will be constructed to follow the “Maybrook Line” across the black dirt agricultural region of Orange County up through Orange/Ulster Counties along an abandoned railway line easement and under the Hudson River not far from the Poughkeepsie Bridge, to Dutchess County.  NYMarc will also come southward from the north of Athens, NY, where there will be another hydrofracked fueled Power Plant, to Pleasant Valley in Dutchess County.  From there it will continue on to Dover Plaines where (probably) the CPV corporation will construct the  “Cricket Valley” Hydrofracked Gas Fueled 1,000 MW Power Plant.  From there the pipeline will head southward to Brookfield, on to the Bridgeport Energy plant and Milford Power Plant, then junction across Long Island Sound on to Hunts Point and an Astoria energy generating plant in the west and to Northport onward to South Commack.  Long Island will be a point of export.   NYMarc will interconnect with the 416-mile (30″ and 24″) Iroquois Gas Transmission System Pipeline from the Canadian border at Waddington, NY through Maine, on down through New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut  on to Long Island and New York City, NY. There may be other hydrofracked “natural” gas fueled power plants along the way.  But all of the infrastructure, subsidized by tax payers and investor dollars secured by Federal Loan Guarantees or other tax payer financing will inevitably become archaic and/or superfluous within our children’s lifetime. That is, the infrastructure will become obsolete and/or it will contribute to extreme weather and environmental catastrophes to such an extent that it will ultimately be abandoned.  Still our children and theirs will carry the burden of the cost of the gas infrastructure and its legacy, while the few who profit will be well insulated from loss or long gone; a pretty sad and bleak scenario.

And, it should be noted, that there are other pipelines as well that figure into this picture; the Tennessee and the Spectra pipelines, which traverse Pennsylvania, New Jersey and the Spectra now under construction from New Jersey under the Hudson River to Manhattan.

It is and will continue to be a big fight; local residents against Goliath; the Gas, Oil, and Energy Corporate power block!  The question is: where will we, you and I stand? Given corporate money to flood the media with misinformation and domination of our electoral system, in the absence of Election Reform, is there a prayer for the minority of “informed” people to succeed against the forces of ‘Money” and the power of “Greed”?  Something to think about as we head into another electoral season; something, perhaps, that should be shared and debated.

Randolph J. Hurst

Slate Hill, NY