Calvert County Residents Join with Allies to Oppose Dominion Cove Point LNG

Photo: John Zangas
Photo: John Zangas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Resident of Lusby, Maryland Arrested Attempting to Deliver Petition at Pier Construction Site

November 10, 2014

Activists from across the country joined residents of Calvert County, Maryland at the Dominion Cove Point pier construction site to call on Virginia-based Dominion Resources to halt the project. Leslie Garcia, who lives in a neighborhood adjacent to the existing Cove Point facility in Lusby, Maryland, was arrested when she attempted to walk onto the site to deliver a call for the immediate and permanent cessation of construction to a Dominion representative. The remaining demonstrators, who numbered nearly fifty, maintained a picket line in front of the entrance to the site for two hours. The action was organized by Stopping Extraction and Exports Destruction (SEED), an umbrella group of mid-Atlantic activists fighting dirty energy projects.

Dominion is planning to build a $3.8 billion facility to bring nearly a billion cubic feet of gas per day from fracking wells across the Appalachian region, liquefy it on the Chesapeake Bay, and export it to Asia. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) approved the project on September 29. Critics of the project have raised concerns about the project’s potential environmental, health, and safety impacts at the local, national, and international levels.

Chief among local residents’ concerns is the fact that facility would be the first methane gas liquefaction plant ever built next to a densely populated residential neighborhood. As Garcia noted, “I live in Cove Point Beach. The only way out of my community, should there be an explosion at Dominion’s refinery, is to drive toward the disaster. I have nothing to lose by protesting, because we have everything to lose if this project continues.”

Other residents observed that the project has already had negative impacts on southern Maryland. The pier currently under construction, which would be used to bring in equipment too large to transport over land, is located about six miles south of the proposed export terminal. It is next to the base of the Thomas Johnson Bridge, where the Patuxent River flows into the Chesapeake Bay. In addition to concerns about the stability of the bridge and the danger of barges loaded with heavy equipment passing beneath it, construction of the pier requires the severe disturbance of oyster habitat in the river.

“This pier destroys the hundreds of species that exist on the oyster bar as an intimate web of inter-dependencies that took thousands of years to establish and work collectively to clean the Chesapeake Bay,” said science educator and Lusby resident Linda Morin. “This destruction of an ecosystem foreshadows the destruction to come with Dominion’s fracked gas refinery.”

Activists traveled from several other states, including Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Rhode Island, to demonstrate resistance to the project and show support for the residents fighting it. “I support communities that are fighting for life because all grievances are intertwined. We need to start taking stands with different communities in different parts of the country,” said Camila Ibañez from Utah Tar Sands Resistance.

Today’s protest occurred days after two major actions at the same site in which participants were arrested. On Monday, November 3, Kelly Canavan, president of AMP Creeks Council and an organizer with SEED, locked herself to a piece of construction equipment at the same site, delaying the start of the work day. She was extracted by members of the Calvert County Sheriff’s Department, arrested, and detained for several hours. On Tuesday, nine activists entered the site to demonstrate opposition as part of the Beyond Extreme Energy week of action. They were arrested, along with two photographers, and detained overnight.

For Twitter updates follow @SEED_Action, @FANG_Together, and #StopGasExports

Photos are available at https://www.flickr.com/photos/seedcoalition

Additional statements from Calvert County residents are available at https://seedcoalition.wordpress.com/2014/11/10/statements-on-dominion-cove-point-lng-by-calvert-county-residents/

Note: The photos on the SEED Coalition Flickr are, for the most part, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike license. We not sticklers for copyright (let the info flow!), but pictures are one of the ways we get our message out. We ask that you attribute our pictures to “SEED Coalition” for that purpose. (If they’re not ours, it will give the source in the caption. Same deal: please follow the terms of the license, which will usually be the same.) Otherwise, go wild.

 

Gas Export Foes Arrested at Cove Point Construction Site

Cetology

By Anne Meador

Eleven people, including two photographers, were arrested on November 4 at the Maryland construction site of a pier to service Cove Point LNG, a natural gas export facility.

Nine activists wearing blue jumpsuits and yellow hardhats scaled a massive dirt mound at the site. Three protestors were stopped by sheriff’s deputies, but six reached the summit and held a banner aloft saying, “WE > Dominion Profits”.

They sat down as they were approached by law enforcement officers, who then cuffed them. The officers led some down the dirt hill but carried others.

The nine protestors were charged with trespassing and failure to obey. The two photographers were charged with trespassing. All were held in jail overnight.

“I see the huge risks that [Cove Point] poses,” said Dr. Margaret Flowers, a protestor who climbed the hill. “The risks to the surrounding community are huge, and that alone is…

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ACTION: Stop Fracked Gas Exports in Maryland!

Take action against the construction of the Cove Point LNG export facility!

Where: Dominion Cove Point LNG Offsite Area B, Solomons, Maryland

When: 6:00 a.m. on November 10, 2014

SEED (Stopping Extraction and Exports Destruction), an umbrella group of mid-Atlantic activists fighting energy extraction and exports, is calling on everybody who opposes the construction of the Cove Point LNG export facility to join us for a peaceful rally and sit-in against Dominion Energy’s construction of a giant pier, an important first step in the process of constructing the liquid natural gas (LNG) export facility at Cove Point in Lusby, Maryland. This pier will provide a means for Dominion to receive shipments by barge that are too large to transport via land, such as oversized construction equipment.

Where: Solomons, Maryland, “Offsite Area B,” a parcel of land directly east of the boat landing on the Calvert side of the Thomas Johnson bridge that connects Calvert and St. Mary’s Counties. Parking is available at the boat landing, along the streets on Solomons Island and in other parking lots nearby.

There are three ways that people can participate in the action: Group 1 will hold signs and chant, cheering people on in a vibrant display of resistance without any intention of risking arrest. Group 1 will stay on public land that is deemed OK for supporters and onlookers to stand on without harassment from the police or other law enforcement. Group 2 will join with the sit-in until they are given a warning of arrest by the police, at which point they will join Group 1. Group 3 will participate in the sit-in and remain until they are arrested or the action ends.

SEED will be hosting a legal and know-your-rights training during the week of November 3 for anyone who wants to attend (more details to come). Jail support will be provided. However, each participant will be responsible for covering their own subsequent court or bail costs, should there be any.

Please share this call to action with your friends and networks. The more people who participate in this action, no matter which group they decide to join, the more successful it will be! We hope to see you bright and early on November 10!

Need help getting there? Email us at contactseed[at]riseup.net and we’ll do our best!

Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1553325824880200/