Category Archives: Gilchrist County

Likely loss of drilling fluid in limestone under rivers –FL DEP to FERC

Apparently the Florida Department of Environmental Protection complained to FERC that any drilling under our blackwater rivers would leak contaminants into the karst limestone that contains our drinking water Floridan Aquifer:

Update 2015-04-03: Additions now that FERC eLibrary is working, including third point below.

  • Sabal Trail underestimated karst features—additional, more recent data available from agencies including LiDAR, potentiometric surface maps, and cave maps.
  • Highest agency concern is associated with likely loss of drilling fluid associated with HDDs in limestone bedrock including at the Suwannee, Santa Fe, and Withlacoochee rivers.
  • Drilling fluid loss would have an environmental impact; risk and magnitude of impact on groundwater, wells and springs should be based on updated, site-specific information.

Filed with FERC 1 April 2015 as Continue reading Likely loss of drilling fluid in limestone under rivers –FL DEP to FERC

Giant fireball from 4-inch pipeline in Gilchrist County, FL 2012-06-27

The proposed 36-inch Sabal Trail pipeline next to that old FGT line would have 81 times as much gas; maybe more, since it’s apparently also higher pressure. staff reported 27 June 2013, Ruptured gas line explodes in Gilchrist,

A high-pressure natural gas pipeline exploded into a gigantic fireball and 30-foot-high flames in Gilchrist County on Tuesday night after a tree fell and ruptured the line, authorities said.

The tree also took down a power line, which officials said likely ignited the escaping gas.

Gainesville Fire Rescue’s Haz-Mat team and district chief responded to the scene in Bell at around 6:30 p.m. to assist Gilchrist County units.

An emergency crew from the natural gas company helped the rescue units find and secure a shut-off valve for the 4-inch line. The crews stood by while the residual gas burned off. posted video from Gainesville Fire and Rescue. It’s quite impressive, and unfortunately unembeddable, so follow the link to see it.

WCBJ TV reported 27 June 2012, Gas Line Explosion Lights up Road, Continue reading Giant fireball from 4-inch pipeline in Gilchrist County, FL 2012-06-27

Sabal Trail delays formal FERC filing until “sometime later this year”

Sabal Trail has backed off its end-of-October FERC filing target, now saying “sometime later this year”. Opposition is having some effects!

Robert Hudson wrote for 1 October 2014, in Tallapoosa County, Alabama, where Sabal Trail proposes to start its hundred-foot gouge through three states, Company preparing to submit natural gas pipeline application to FERC, Continue reading Sabal Trail delays formal FERC filing until “sometime later this year”

Sabal Trail in Albany, GA 2014-10-20

A Sabal Trail Open House in Albany, Dougherty County, GA Monday, then one in Jasper, Hamilton County, FL Tuesday. That’s the first two places in the route alternatives Sabal Trail just published. Does that mean Trenton, Gilchrist County, FL Wednesday and Kissimmee, Osceola County, FL Thursday? There is no published Open House schedule on or, so anybody who knows of more of these, let us know.

300x200 stiff upper lip: John Peconom of FERC, in FERC in Albany, by Jen Maloney, 29 September 2014 facebook event created today by Jen Maloney:

Sabal Trail “Open House”

Monday, October 20 at 5:00pm – 7:00pm
Hilton Garden Inn Albany Hotel
101 S Front St, Albany, Georgia 31701

The picture is by Continue reading Sabal Trail in Albany, GA 2014-10-20

Sabal Trail Notice of EIS Intent and Route Alternatives

A FERC comment period ending 15 November 2014 seems to mean Sabal Trail will miss its 31 October formal filing date. 300x391 Withlacoochee River Crossing Route Alternative, Hamilton and Suwannee Counties, Florida (bare), in Sabal Trail Notice of EIS Intent, by John S. Quarterman, for, 15 October 2014 No relief suggested for crossing the Withlacoochee River at the border of Brooks and Lowndes Counties, Georgia (or inside Lowndes County next to Valdosta, according to several of the previous alternatives). And every proposed path still crosses the Suwannee River into Suwannee County.

Maybe that’s because the Dougherty County Commission and the Albany City Council actually stood up for their citizens, as did Gilchrist County (see Wacassassa Flats Alternative), while the Suwannee County Commission swallowed Sabal Trail disinformation and the Lowndes County Commission and the Valdosta City Council did little (except one letter from the Chairman) or nothing (except one letter from one Council member).

300x131 Sasser Route Alternative, Albany Compressor station Alternatives, Terrell, Lee, and Dougherty Counties. Georgia (bottom), in Sabal Trail Notice of EIS Intent, by John S. Quarterman, for, 15 October 2014 There’s still time for Dougherty, Lowndes, and all the other counties and cities to pass ordinances, and to lobby state and federal agencies and elected and appointed officials. Oh, and there’s an election going on.

Also no mention of Sabal Trail’s Jasper, Florida Open House, 5-7:30 Tuesday 21 October 2014, but STT’s newspaper notice said the public is invited, so y’all come!

Filed with FERC today, 15 October 2014, Supplemental Notice of Intent to Prepare an Environment Impact Statement for the Planned Southeast Market Pipeline Project and Request for Comments on Environmental Issues etc. re Sabal Trail Transmission, LLC under PF14-1.


Docket No. PF14-1-000

Continue reading Sabal Trail Notice of EIS Intent and Route Alternatives

Inadequate insurance and safety plus eminent domain and environmental destruction by Sabal Trail –OSFR

Merrillee Malwitz-Jipson of Our Santa Fe River sent this letter yesterday to the same newspapers Sabal Trail has been in recently. -jsq

Sabal Trail’s spokesperson distributing large quantities of disinformation

“Safety, public input, federal monitoring, jobs, tax revenue, exceed federal safety requirements, reliability, affordable, clean, thorough review, latest proven technologies:” these are all good little meta tags and nice sounding words and phrases used by Andrea Grover, public relations employee for Sabal Trail, in her recent editorial about that company’s proposed natural gas pipeline which was carried by newspapers in the southeastern United States.

But let us point out a few facts that this editorial fails to mention. There were plenty of public input meetings (we attended seven of these, and we read the minutes from others) and the input was overwhelmingly negative. Issues of concern include Continue reading Inadequate insurance and safety plus eminent domain and environmental destruction by Sabal Trail –OSFR

Sustainable Spectra? Like healthy cigarettes?

What company prints its sustainability report on wind-powered paper, yet pipes a greenhouse gas 20 times worse than CO2? Yep, it’s Spectra Energy, also bragging about how respectful they are to Sabal Trail “stakeholders”. Selling fracked methane through a 36-inch pipe in a hundred-foot gash through forests and wetlands with a thousand-foot explosive radius is like selling cigarettes and claiming you’re for good health. Tobacco companies can’t get away with that any more, and why should fossil fuel companies?

On the very last page of a 16-page report, 2013 Sustainability Highlights Report, Spectra Energy says:

This paper is manufactured using clean, renewable wind-power energy and carbon offsets for additional savings.

That’s the only mention of wind or renewable energy in the document, while solar power is not mentioned even once.

And look at Spectra’s Purpose on page 2: Continue reading Sustainable Spectra? Like healthy cigarettes?

See the FERC rubberstamp machine in action

You’ve heard the song, now see the FERC rubberstamp machine in action in videos of Sabal Trail interrogated in Gilchrist County, Florida @ GCC 2014-02-20, of the Valdosta FERC Scoping Meeting @ FERC 2014-03-04, and of the Moultrie FERC Scoping Meeting @ FERC 2014-03-05. See FERC refuse to release a tax-paid RFP and tax-paid-staff-reviewed proposals for an environmental contractor, and then see that very same contractor admit that the Sabal Trail pipeline would take twice the acreage to produce as much power as solar PV, while FERC refuses to consider that the pipeline would be far more environmentally damaging, more expensive, and would take much longer.

Nevermind landowners get only a one-time payment from the pipeline company, not rent and FERC has no Continue reading See the FERC rubberstamp machine in action

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, Continue reading Say no to pipeline bait and switch –Marihelen Wheeler

Pipeline accident risk in Florida springs heartland: go solar instead

Springs before pipelines, say board members of Our Santa Fe River in central Florida, and let’s get on with clean solar power.

Merrillee Malwitz-Jipson and Jim Tatum wrote for the Gainesville Sun 25 April 2014, Pipeline in springs heartland would be at risk for accidents,

Is another gas highway pipeline inevitable in our Florida springs heartland?

They quote FPL and note the unanimous October 2013 Florida Public Service Commission (FL PSC) approval of the Sabal Trail Transmission pipeline project, including FL PSC Commissioner Julie Brown saying, “The need for this project is indisputable at this time.” Then they dispute that need. Continue reading Pipeline accident risk in Florida springs heartland: go solar instead