Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Tree Sit Blocks Clearcutting for Tennessee Pipeline "NO PIPELINE!" Banner Dropped

ALERT: Loggers cutting Dangerously Close to Tree Sitter.
Milford, PA, February 19 2012 – Neighboring Orange County, NY resident Gifford Pinchot, has erected a tree stand to prevent the designated clear cutting required to for construction of the Tennessee Gas Pipeline (TGP) Upgrade between Foster Hill and Cummings Hill roads. 

The Northeast Upgrade would transport additional Marcellus Shale gas west to east  from hydraulically fractured wells along Pennsylvania’s Northern Tier. Hydrofracking, or fracking, has become a controversial method of extracting natural gas due to its reputation for contaminating local waterways, dangerously disposing of ‘frack’ waste, and other social, economic, and environmental concerns.
       UPDATES and FIRSTHAND ACCOUNTS



Pinchot said, “I’m concerned that the TGP ‘s project  is set to go through six sensitive wetlands on its way to Cummins Hill, clearing through mature forest and important ecological habitat, including endangered species.” Cummins Hill is a cultural icon for Milford, being home to at least one bald eagle’s nest as well as being an economic resource for eco-tourism. Pinchot added his frustration with the statement, “These gas executives just want to extract from our communities- take what they can and leave us to deal with ecological devastation.”

Simultaneously a large banner reading, “No Pipeline!” in bold black and red lettering was dropped in solidarity, over the interstate 84 overpass on Cummins Hill Rd to display support for the blockades that have been ongoing since Monday. A  lock down on Monday and Tuesday to a Delaware State Forest gate that blocked access to the slated clear-cut is now in it's third day with Alex Lotorto and Cornelia Pinochot. Trained Emergency Medical Technicians are on site for both actions.

These actions are part of a campaign opposing the Tennessee Pipeline in the Delaware River Basin. The direct action campaign is taking place after nearly two years of local political leaders and grassroots opposition in the courts, public comment, and protest.

This week will culminate with family friendly events, including a vigil on Friday at 5PM at the traffic light in Milford (intersection of Broad and Harford, also Rte 6  and Rte 209, where the Yale School of Forestry was founded and a sidewalk march Saturday afternoon  from the Milford traffic light  across the Milford Bridge, over the Delaware River, to Montague NJ. All are welcome to attend.

At 1pm-3pm Deleware River Keeper is hosting a public meet-up at the Water Wheel Cafe in Milford to help residents watchdog TGP Pipeline tree-clearing activities.

UPDATE 2:13 pm: Ground supporters are released from detention by Police officers.

UPDATE 12:24 pm: Ground Support for Gifford have cooperated with police to leave the park and are being detained by two officers who had placed them in their vehicle handcuffed, but indicated that they are not under arrest. Gifford remains in the tree and is strongly committed to staying and protecting the area from fracking and the Pipeline.

UPDATE 9:24 am: An independent contractor, Mike, with TGP's Michle has informed protesters that law enforcement has been called but no felling would take place unless "it's safe."

UPDATE 8:15 am: Protesters contacted by surveyors,


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Contact:

Alex Lotorto, Pike County, PA Resident 570-269-9589 / alotorto@gmail.com
 

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