Say no to pipeline bait and switch –Marihelen Wheeler

This op-ed spells out actions by Sabal Trail and FERC, that it interprets as deception, and it concludes we can all say no to that unnecessary pipeline. I’ve added a few pictures and links.

Marihelen Wheeler wrote an op-ed in the Ocala StarBanner 1 June 2014, Floridians can and must say no to gas pipeline,

It should be called “psychological bait and switch.” This tactic is being used by corporations trying to engage and solicit residents’ support for controversial projects that will negatively impact those residents. Among the most recent projects is the proposed Sabal Trail gas pipeline that will disturb about 13,670 acres of Florida land.

A company’s first move is to propose an idea that is so distasteful that, after hearing residents’ concerns, they can then offer a lesser, more acceptable plan, much to the relief of the people concerned. The company gets what it wanted all along, and the folks who have had their say feel they have been heard and accept the more reasonable offer.

In March, public comments from Alabama and Georgia residents, and then Florida residents, were taken by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. I attended three of those meetings held in Live Oak, Bell and Dunnellon, where the rooms were crowded with concerned residents alarmed by the idea of such an intrusive gas pipeline running through Florida’s fragile environment.

She wrote about the new westerly plan: that’s what she calls bait and switch. And she’s against the pipeline going through Florida at all.

There’s an copyright on the op-ed, which puzzles me, given that it’s an op-ed, but I’ll only quote a few more lines as fair use.

No one could produce data showing the need for such a gas pipeline. No one could assure us that the safety record of Duke Energy would be taken into consideration — even though it is a terrible one. We could not be assured that the pipeline carrying this increased load of gas was not being transported through private properties only to be exported. A federal agency has said that the states are not watching over the safety of its citizens when it comes to oversight of these gas pipelines.

Spectra brings its workers mostly from Texas, although they say they hire locally.

Sounds like she’s on to their tricks. There’s more in her op-ed, including this:

As residents of Florida, we can just say no. It has been done in other communities, and we do not have to take what is offered. We do not have to accept the lesser of two evils.

The newspaper says Marihelen Wheeler is running for Florida’s Congressional District 3. That district is currently occupied by Ted Yoho, and includes all of the counties along the proposed pipeline path in Florida from the Georgia border almost to Ocala.


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