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  • Thank you Prince George’s County for banning fracking! The movement against fracking in Maryland is growing. | Chesapeake Climate Action Network
    movement against fracking in Maryland is growing Today s unanimous vote makes Prince George s the first county to adopt a ban on fracking since CCAN and our allies won a two year legislative moratorium on the practice last year Remember that A hard won true grassroots victory Before the moratorium was in place one other county Montgomery County quietly adopted a change to their zoning laws that basically prohibits fracking in the county I could not have felt more thankful sitting in that room this morning thank you to Councilwoman Mary Lehman for her vision and leadership in introducing this bill thank you to the PZED committee for voting unanimously to pass it thank you to Council members Turner Glaros Patterson Franklin and Tavares for sponsoring it and thank you to Chairman Davis and the whole council for holding this hearing and vote today And I could not have felt more proud proud of CCAN and our allies at Food Water Watch the Sierra Club and the Greenbelt Climate Action Network for quickly spreading the word about this previously unknown threat to Prince George s County s air water and property values not to mention the global climate and proud of the more than one thousand concerned residents like you who stood up to say no to fracking in our county Like the hard won victory that was the moratorium this ban in Prince George s wouldn t have happened without the citizen movement behind it Dozens of you turned out for community meetings to learn more about what fracking would mean to our county You called you emailed you met with your county council members You met with business owners and church leaders You testified at county council hearings You petitioned on college campuses and in your communities

    Original URL path: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/blog/thank-you-prince-georges-county-for-banning-fracking-the-movement-against-fracking-in-maryland-is-growing/ (2016-05-02)
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  • The Grades are In on Governor McAuliffe | Chesapeake Climate Action Network
    fallen far short compared to his promises as a candidate and in light of the growing urgency of the climate crisis You can read the full report and read why here While we give the Governor credit for positive steps like modest solar and efficiency measures a veto of coal tax credits and securing federal funds to combat sea level rise his championing of decades more reliance on fracked gas threatens to have a far more substantive long term negative impact For example Governor McAuliffe has lobbied for major new fracked gas pipelines Dominion s Atlantic Coast Pipeline and the Mountain Valley Pipeline that could trigger more greenhouse gas pollution than all of the state s current coal and gas fired power plants combined He s also pushed for opening up Virginia s coastal waters to offshore drilling only to see that plan thanks to an outpouring of grassroots opposition withdrawn by President Obama But Governor McAuliffe also gets a major incomplete and a major chance to rescue his average when it comes to the federal Clean Power Plan Some great allies leaders with Virginia Organizing the Virginia Student Environmental Coalition and Interfaith Power Light DMV as well as landowners fighting fracked gas pipelines and riverkeepers fighting to protect our rivers from coal ash joined CCAN Director Mike Tidwell on a conference call with reporters to get this message out And it was picked up by news stories we generated in the Roanoke Times on Washington s WAMU radio station in the Virginian Pilot on Blue Virginia in the Bay Journal and more As Joelle Novey director of Interfaith Power Light said We re calling on Gov McAuliffe now to implement a strong Clean Power Plan in Virginia that maximizes reductions in heat trapping climate pollution By designing a state

    Original URL path: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/blog/the-grades-are-in-on-governor-mcauliffe/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Letter from the Director: Organized people are winning! | Chesapeake Climate Action Network
    far In Virginia on March 15th Obama administration announced that no oil companies will be allowed to drill off the fragile shores of coastal Virginia for at least the next five years and perhaps forever The decision came after thousands of Virginians submitted comments in strong opposition to offshore drilling And leaders from the tourism business faith student and environmental communities campaigned openly and noisily against Governor Terry McAuliffe s unacceptable support for ocean drilling Once again organized people can beat organized money Go Virginia And on April 12th the Prince George s County Council on Maryland s border with DC voted unanimously to ban gas companies from fracking along a gas deposit that runs under the county The vote came after landowners homeowners students businesses and others from across the county signed petitions packed hearing rooms and said no A year earlier the County Council of neighboring Montgomery County did the same thing Now CCAN and our partners are turning our attention toward passing a permanent legislative statewide ban on fracking in the Maryland General Assembly in 2017 Stay tuned Meanwhile in Baltimore a David vs Goliath fight to stop the nation s largest trash burning incinerator achieved a key victory in March Students and utterly determined neighbors in Curtis Bay succeeded in pressuring Maryland regulators to finally terminate the company s permit Twenty year old Destiny Watford who helped lead this fight just won the prestigious Goldman prize for her visionary work for environmental justice against a power company that wanted to soak her neighborhood in more mercury soot and other pollutants from the combustion of trash I m happy to say that in all of these fights across the region CCAN played a key part in building the winning coalitions that got the job done What s

    Original URL path: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/blog/letter-from-the-director-organized-people-are-winning/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Report from the DC Circuit: Federal Court Hears Case Against Cove Point Export Facility | Chesapeake Climate Action Network
    She first argued that FERC failed its duty under NEPA when it found that the export facility would not promote any regional gas development That this massive facility would induce gas development not only makes logical sense but it s also backed up by facts She reminded the court that a Pennsylvania based energy company plans to drill new wells and ship the gas to Cove Point for export to Japan She stressed to the court that this new gas production would require the use of millions of gallons of water thousands of truck trips and would greatly impact the lives of people living near the not yet drilled wells She also argued that FERC fell far short of its statutory obligations by refusing to take the lifecycle climate emissions of the project into account Even the direct emissions of two million tons of greenhouse gases per year she argued should have triggered a finding of significance When you take the lifecycle of natural gas into account the emissions increase to 26 million tons per year about the same emissions as Maryland s entire fleet of coal fired power plants In a strange twist the energy giant BP was on our side of the aisle yesterday Before Dominion proposed to expand and convert the terminal Cove Point was a mostly dormant import facility Energy companies including BP and Statoil had contracts to import natural gas to the terminal Dominion granted Statoil the opportunity to relinquish its import capacity but did not grant BP the same opportunity BP was challenging FERC s approval of this arrangement The attorney for BP walked the judges through the Natural Gas Act and explained why BP should have gotten the same opportunity as Statoil to get out of its contract The issue was complex though narrow and seemed to capture the attention of all the judges on the panel Once the petitioners EarthReports and BP had finished arguing it was the respondents turn to respond FERC was joined by Dominion and the American Petroleum Institute both of which had intervened on FERC s behalf FERC s attorney was most prepared to discuss the environmental issues but the judges focused the majority of their attention on BP s claim While that focus meant that FERC did not have much opportunity to respond to our environmental claims it also seemed to distract the judges from the larger and more impactful issues at stake Allowing BP to terminate its contract early has far less of an impact than forcing FERC to fully account for the human and environmental costs of the unprecedented natural gas expansion it s facilitating When FERC s attorney was able to respond to our environmental claims she argued that any indirect effects were too speculative for FERC to consider Dominion argued that FERC conducted a sufficiently thorough review of the relevant information Judge Rogers pushed back Sure she said an agency could write 215 pages but if it left out the main analysis it

    Original URL path: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/blog/report-from-the-dc-circuit-federal-court-hears-case-against-cove-point-export-facility/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Keeping the pressure on Dominion | Chesapeake Climate Action Network
    dime they even paid for a nice bar tab too And we ve learned that Governor Terry McAuliffe is more willing to side with Dominion than with us None of that has changed Virginians minds that this plan for toxic coal ash disposal has to stop And it s led to some of the most inspired resistance I ve ever seen in Virginia Over 600 strong marched in Richmond students peacefully occupied the Department of Environmental Quality demanding answers and citizens across the state are mobilizing to organize film screenings workshops and trainings to fight back I think we ve reached a tipping point Virginians are tired of business as usual namely Dominion getting its way We re tired of Dominion using its money to buy off our legislators We re tired of Dominion killing bills to promote wind and solar power And we re tired of Dominion pushing its dirty Atlantic Coast Pipeline down our throats So we re pushing back because this fight is far from over Potomac Riverkeeper Network and the Southern Environmental Law Center continue to challenge the legality of Dominion s dewatering permit at the Possum Point Power Station They ve called on the Environmental Protection Agency to launch a criminal investigation into Dominion s dumping in Quantico Creek last summer and we re working to support their call We re continuing to bring attention to the cozy relationship between Dominion and DEQ and have no plans of stopping Next up DEQ will be releasing the draft permits for Dominion s handling of the solid coal ash waste piled up in its ponds across Virginia and we plan to fight them tooth and nail We already know they are inadequate because Dominion wants to leave the toxic coal ash in dated unlined landfills right along

    Original URL path: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/blog/keeping-the-pressure-on-dominion/ (2016-05-02)
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  • D.C. Circuit Court Hears Environmental Challenge to Feds’ Approval of Cove Point Gas Export Facility in Maryland | Chesapeake Climate Action Network
    are asking the court to require that FERC go back to the drawing board and fully evaluate the many ways in which this project will degrade the environment Specifically the petitioners are asking the federal court to require FERC to prepare a more rigorous Environmental Impact Statement and to order Dominion to halt construction in the meantime The groups contend that FERC circumvented the National Environmental Policy Act by failing to credibly consider the significant new amounts of air water and climate pollution that would be triggered by expanded fracking and fracked gas infrastructure upstream of the Cove Point facility Dominion is permitted to export nearly one billion cubic feet of gas per day Analysis indicates that accounting for emissions triggered across the lifecycle of fracking piping liquefying shipping and burning the gas the Cove Point terminal could cause more greenhouse gas pollution than all eight of Maryland s coal fired power plants combined It defies logic and the law for FERC to claim that it can t determine whether exporting massive new amounts of gas will involve new fracking or new emissions of heat trapping methane said Anne Havemann general counsel at the Chesapeake Climate Action Network Based on a shoddy environmental review FERC has already subjected residents of Calvert County to irreparable harm We look to the court to step in before an ounce of gas is exported causing even more harm to our climate and worsening record heat storms sea level rise and flooding The stated purpose of this and other export terminals is to provide a market for increased gas production said Nathan Matthews staff attorney at Sierra Club who is litigating Sierra Club s challenges to other LNG export approvals Exports plainly mean more drilling more fracking and more climate disrupting pollution but FERC has

    Original URL path: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/press-releases/dc-circuit-court-hears-environmental-challenge-approval-of-cove-point-gas-export-facility/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Maryland’s Prince George’s County Approves Ban on Fracking | Chesapeake Climate Action Network
    fall of 2014 the Montgomery County Council adopted a change to its county zoning laws that essentially prohibits fracking Prince George s County is showing that the grassroots opposition to fracking is only growing across Maryland said Thomas Meyer Maryland Organizer with Food Water Watch The Council listened to residents and the science and made the right move by banning fracking The Maryland General Assembly should follow Prince George s lead and do the same Outside of Western Maryland Prince George s County is one of the Maryland counties most at risk for fracking The southeastern third of the county sits on top of the Taylorsville Basin which extends northeast from Richmond Virginia to Annapolis Maryland and is estimated to contain more than 500 billion cubic feet of gas 1 Across the Potomac River in Virginia a Texas based company has already leased more than 80 000 acres for potential fracking in the Taylorsville Basin Parts of Charles Anne Arundel Calvert and St Mary s Counties also sit atop this basin Today s vote follows months of citizen organizing driven by concern for the county s air and water quality for real estate values and for the climate said Monique Sullivan Field Director at the Chesapeake Climate Action Network The County Council s action will keep dirty fuels in the ground and protect the health and safety of citizens In the coming year this same citizen movement will push our General Assembly to follow suit In the lead up to today s vote organizers and volunteers held film screenings and presentations at community meetings and churches across the county gathered over 1 000 petitions to County Councilmembers delivered a letter of support signed by more than 25 organizations and businesses and packed the room at fall and spring hearings on

    Original URL path: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/press-releases/fracking-ban-passed-by-md-s-prince-georges-county/ (2016-05-02)
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  • Upcoming Events | Events | Chesapeake Climate Action Network
    climate action within Maryland and Baltimore played a crucial role in that success Join us as we celebrate the passage of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act and the Clean Energy Jobs Act This could not have been done without the help of all the volunteers Town Councils and County delegations who came together to help move this Find out more Prince George s Celebration of Climate Bill Victories May 5 7 00 pm 9 00 pm The 2016 session was a landmark for climate action and clean energy in Maryland Now it s time for a celebration The 2016 session was huge for climate action within Maryland and Prince George s played a crucial role in that success Join us as we celebrate the passage of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act and the Clean Energy Jobs Act This could not have been done without the help of all the volunteers Town Councils and County delegations who came together to help move Find out more Bring your voice to Dominion s Shareholder Meeting May 11 8 00 am 2 00 pm RSVP Bring your voice to Dominion s Shareholder Meeting For years Dominion Virginia Power has put its bottom line ahead of our right to clean water and healthy communities In Virginia and across the Mid Atlantic Dominion is planning for a future built on climate destabilizing and increasingly risky energy sources like coal fracked gas and nuclear while spending billions to ensure regulators and legislators don t force it to change course This May we re pushing back RSVP to join us Dominion Resources is holding Find out more Beyond Extreme Energy s Rubber Stamp Rebellion at FERC May 15 8 00 am May 22 5 00 pm On May 15 22 in Washington DC and elsewhere where people are

    Original URL path: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/events/ (2016-05-02)
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