Watch the PSB referee major gas pipeline showdown
On June 22 and 23, David is going to face off against Goliath in tense competition refereed by the Vermont Public Service Board (PSB). Goliath, a foreign corporation, will be defended by a battalion of executives, lawyers and consultants. David, played by a couple of Vermont farmers, has the support of friends and grassroots organizations like Just Power and 350vt.org.
Instead of a slingshot, David will be armed with facts. The prize, if Goliath wins, is a Certificate of Public Good, which would allow the giant Canadian company Gaz Métro, represented here by Vermont Gas Systems (VGS), to forcibly seize a right-of-way through the farmers’ wetlands to build a pipeline which would transmit fracked gas from Alberta to points south and establish a corridor from the fracking fields of Pennsylvania. If David wins, Vermont’s commitment to truly clean, renewable energy is confirmed, explosives will not flow through our towns and farms, and current VGS customers will avoid the certainty of thousands of dollars in additional charges for decades to come.
The showdown will be informative and at some points entertaining, but the important reason to be there in person is to let the PSB know that we are watching, and that we value facts, property rights and consumer protection over marketing hype, and that we understand that costly new fossil fuel infrastructure is not a bridge to sustainable energy. Will the PSB protect Vermonters, or facilitate the goals of the very corporations they are charged to regulate?
The hearings will begin at 9:30 each morning at the PSB offices in Montpelier.
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