Town Council Meeting w/ Spectra
- On Monday, February 6, the Town Council met publicly with Spectra to address the recent leak at the the M&R station.
- Congressman Lynch, Representative Murphy, and State Senator Keenan provided public testimony and voiced their concern around the leak.
- The Town Councilors and local elected officials asked poignant questions about how this leak could happen, why it is that Spectra didn't initally know, and what they plan to do to prevent this from occurring again. There were many questions left unanswered and inadequately answered.
- You can read Councilor Haugh's detailed recap of the meeting here.
- If you want to re-watch the meeting, you can do so here (begins around minute 9:20) It's worth watching.
Intervenor Citizen Group Established
- The town has put together a 10-person citizen group to act as an intervenor on Spectra's air quality permit application. This group is full and consists of the Mayor and 9 town council members. All councilors members wanted to be on the group, but it is limited to 10 people.
- The town itself also filed as an intervenor, but DEP often throws out municipalities and almost never throws out citizen groups.
- We retained the services of DC attorney Carolyn Elefant, the foremost expert in dealing with FERC.
- Initially we hired her to help file for a rehearing with FERC, but because they granted the conditional certificate right before Commissioner Bay left, leaving FERC without a quorum, they not cannot issue a rehearing. So we're trying to sort out possible next steps. FERC could issue a tolling order which would allow them to file a rehearing w/o a quorum.
- Our attorney is working separately from the town's attorney; she is working on issues that the Town isn't/can't work on. She is also representing all impacted towns (Weymouth, Braintree, Quincy, etc.) and the town's lawyer is only representing the Town of Weymouth.
- We have only 30 days after FERC's filing (January 25) to request a rehearing - we are working with Carolyn to make this happen as soon as possible.
- We are raising money for our attorney fees. Our goal is to raise $10,000.
- Thanks to the contributions of so many wonderful people, we've raised $7,000 in just a few weeks! Thank you to all who have donated and to the North Weymouth Civic Association for organizing a meat raffle, which raised $2,000!
- We're still collecting donations. If you are able to donate, you can do so through our website or by mailing a check to: FRRACS, PO Box 485, South Weymouth, MA 02190.
- A few talented FRRACS members are giving away framed watercolors and photographs for a donation. If you are interested in one of those, let us know!
- Thank you again for your generous support!
- Last month we held 3-hour a Nonviolent Direct Action (NVDA) training with The FANG Collective.
- The FANG Collective, a group that organizes nonviolent resistance to fossil fuel infrastructure projects, as well as other social justice issues, facilitated an excellent and in-depth training on NVDA.
- The training covered the history of NVDA and the elements of an action (what to expect, different roles in an action, security culture, self-care, etc.). It was a very informative and helpful training.
- We are looking to have another training for folks that are interested in learning about this tactic. This training would likely be a more in-depth, 6-hour training, that would be held on a weekend. If this is something that interests you, let us know!
- We received a grant from the Island Foundation to buy an air quality monitor and VOC canisters.
- Dr. Nordgaard will use this monitor to collect more data on air quality near the Fore River Basin. Dr. Nordgaard is currently using 2 monitors (one purchased by the NWCA and one purchsed by FRRACS) to collect data. A third monitor will be very helpful in capturing more information.
- We applied for a second grant a few weeks ago. If we get the grant, we will use it to rent billboard space near the Fore River Bridge to inform more people of this issue. We won't hear back until March.
Groundhog Day Action
- On February 2, FRRACS, 350Mass, Toxics Action Center, and Mass Power Forward delivered 12,000 petition signatures to Gov. Baker's office.
- Baker, of course, has not yet responded. We are encouraging folks to continue calling him everyday to voice their concern (617-725-4005). More action items on this to come!
Mass Power Forward Legislative Agenda
- To view a list of their legislative agenda for 2017-2018, click here.
Commonwealth Conversations - Tuesday, February 28
Massachusetts State Senators will be visiting the South Shore to host a Town Hall forum.
We encourage you to attend and to voice your concerns around the pipeline and compressor.
Tuesday, February 28 from 6:30-8:30pm at the Hansen Elementary School Cafeteria in Canton (25 Pecunit Street, Canton, MA 02021).
Local Environmental Conference - Sunday, March 5
- Toxics Action Center and MCAN are hosting their annual Local Environmental Action Conference on Sunday, March 5.
- FRRACS is a co-sponsor of the conference. As a cosponsor, members of FRRACS receive tickets for the discounted price of $25 (regular admission is $35).
- You can buy your ticket here (just be sure to list FRRACS as your group).
- Lois Gibbs and Kandi Moss are the Keynote speakers. Read more about their work here.
- Event Details:
- Sunday, March 5 from 9am-5pm at Northeastern University's Curry Student Center.
350Mass South Shore Node Forum - Sunday, March 5
- The forum will feature a presentation about a carbon tax, led by Marc Breslow, one of the authors of the Global Warming Solutions Act.
- There will also be discussion around current 305Mass campaigns, including their gas leaks campaign.
- To see a map of gas leaks around the state, and possibly near your home (there are 400+ in Weymouth, check out this map made by HEET.
- Event details:
- Sunday, March 5 from 2pm-4pm at the Glastonbury Abbey in Hingham (16 Hull St.)
Volunteers Needed for Air Quality Monitoring
- We received a grant from the Island Foundation that will allow us to buy a handful of VOC air quality testers. We will be placing them in neighborhoods in North Weymouth, Quincy Point, Germantown, and Idlewell.
- Volunteers needed: These canisters are small and will need to be carefully watched. We need teams to essentially babysit each canister for about 8 hours.
- If you are interested in helping, send us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) with your name, and phone number.
Submit Comments to CZM
- Spectra has filed with CZM (Coastal Zone Management) and has gone through every single policy in CZM's handbook and have outlined how they "comply" with these policies.
- FRRACS met with CZM recently and learned that CZM will accept comments from the public on Spectra's filing with them. You can access their filing here.
- FRRACS members have been going through, point by point, making comments on what Spectra has stated. Feel free to respond to sections that you feel you most comfortable with/have the most knowledge about.
- How to submit: Email your comments to FRRACS member, Margaret (email@example.com), and she will funnel them to our contact at CZM. We find that they respond better when it is done this way (though of course, you are welcome to submit directly to CZM yourself).
- CZM still has a stay until Aug. 23 --> this is dependent on the fact the Spectra has not been granted a waterways permit from DEP, which they can't get because ConCom denied the wetlands permit, which they need in order to get the waterways permit.
Continue Calling Gov. Baker
- Thank you to all the people who have made calls and have patiently waited on the phone to leave a message with Gov. Baker's staff. We encourage you to call Gov. Baker's office everyday and urge him to speak out against these pipeline/compressor projects. (617-725-4005)
- A more specific call-to-action on this will be announced soon!
Gov. Baker on WGBH on Thurs., Feb. 16
- We have heard that Baker will be on BPR w/ Jim and Margery on Thursday, Feb. 16.
- He is usually on around 12pm. Call and send in emails with your questions!
- To share your opinion, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 877-301-8970.
Groundhog Day Action
Photo Cred: TAC
Weekly Bridge Standout
Photo Cred: Margaret B.