State, federal politicians missing from pipeline help

The May 20 EPA Hearing in Summerfield Township, Mich. concerning the proposed Trendwell Energy injection well brought howls of protest from local residents. Among the protestors were local politicians Senator Dale Zorn (R-Ida) and Jason Sheppard (R-Temperance).

In Ohio, Wood County Commissioners wonder where their state and federal politicians are on the multiple natural gas pipelines proposed? County Administrator Andrew Kalmar said the commissioners heard from none of the state or federal officials elected to serve the county. The two standout absentee politicians are State Rep. Barbara Sears and U.S. Rep. Robert Latta.

Within the districts of State Rep Barbara Sears (R-District 47) and U.S. Rep Robert Latta (R-OH 5th District) 10 local governments have come out against the NEXUS Pipeline. Resolutions against NEXUS include: Fulton County, Wood County, Waterville Township, Swancreek Township, Providence Township, Middleton Township, Amboy Township, Fulton Township, the village of Swanton, the village of Metamora.

Yet confidently Senator Barbara Sears has written a letter to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in full support of the NEXUS project. As if this isn’t bad enough Rep. Robert Latta cosponsored H.R.161 – Natural Gas Pipeline Permitting Reform Act- which deregulates the FERC permit process automatically granting pipeline approval after one year.

Both representatives have been absent of all public hearings held about the NEXUS pipeline. Neither have responded to Wood County Commissioners repeated requests for information. Both have attended The American Legislative Exchange Council held in Dallas last July 30, 2014. On the agenda ALEC considered a resolution to endorse “expanded markets for LNG [liquefied natural gas] exports from the United States” and pushing for “regulatory and legislative policies designed to streamline and simplify the permitting process.” The policy completely ignores the drastic environmental impacts of the hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, process often used to extract the gas. Both Sears and Latta are well funded by the Oil & Gas Industry. Farm Bureau Director of Energy Services Dale Arnold has said the Wood County area will soon see a revisit of the 1940 oil patch with new fracking technology.

Paul Wohlfarth

Ottawa Lake, Mi.