You must do the things you think you cannot do

Eleanor Roosevelt

The presence of the pipeline in Edgmont Township is both a threat and nuisance to us as residents.  Current township leadership has left many residents to fend for themselves against these profit taking corporations. It’s time local leadership and the community force Energy Transfer Partners (Sunoco) to be accountable for the damages they have incurred and the threat their products represent flowing through our township.

  • Neighborhood Construction nuisance: Many of you live near the pipeline.  At the minimum, if you’re not subjected to the noise of digging or water being sucked out of the ground throughout the night, you are exposed to construction dust and sediment run-off, suck truck traffic and lane closures. Road damage and added potholes make it dangerous to drive in our neighborhoods.    
  • Clean Water: The odds are high if you have a well, you’ve experienced disturbance in the water flow and resultant water tables locally which should, whether you are 450 ft or 1 mile away, should water fissures flow your direction, can bring contamination if it exists from all the digging. We should be worried about our water quality, contamination and health hazards caused by both construction and residual residue from product flow.
  • Safety – Explosion Risks: We don’t like to think about the likelihood of a “major disaster” striking our township yet are we prepared for a disaster? Do we have trained firefighters and other first responders to deal with a crisis related to an explosion? And mostly, do we have any sort of logical plan in place should a disaster occur? The compressed high pressure gas is colorless, odorless and has a mile plus blast radius. The recent Philadelphia refinery explosion of similar materials required specialty firefighters to manage the blaze which lasted over a week.  

Listening to Eric Friedman, our local expert on the pipeline, at a gathering of neighbors who feel it’s Time for Change…

Discussing the risks and dangers of the pipeline

Eric reported that Edgmont fought the public release of the pipeline disaster evacuation report.  When he asked the supervisors at a recorded public meeting to release the report, Ron Gravina refused and stated “if that means a battle in court, so be it.” The Pennsylvania Office of Open Records sided with Eric and forced the Township to release the document.

Here I am leading a gathering of neighbors in the disaster evacuation plan paid for by the Township, but not released to the public. 

Ken Kynett, the Township solicitor, wrote a 90 page argument against releasing this plan to the public.  As Eric Friedman asks, “Why would Edgmont go to such lengths to hide this material? And how much taxpayer money did Edgmont waste paying its solicitor Ken Kynett in this misguided effort?”

Many neighbors, living with non-ending pipeline issues (constant construction noise 24/7, well water pollution, damage to their homes and property, etc.) have shown up regularly for over two years to monthly township meetings, requesting that the Township takes simple actions to enforce our local ordinances.  The Township’s response has been slow to respond and has a frequent lament regarding these continuing infractions by Energy Transfer Partners…“there is nothing we can do”.

Really? Nothing can be done, right here in our own backyards to protect ourselves?

I am amazed at how easy our Township finds it to plead ignorance or pass the buck when it comes to “accountability” in local government. And I will fight for a hopeful future by enforcing township ordinances, including permit requests, to insure that all entities – Energy Transfer Partners included, will be forced to comply with current and new rules that are/will be in place to protect the safety and quality of life for our residents. Join me in saying yes, yes we can do something.  And we will.

It’s clear, it’s Time for Change!

…Get involved. Vote November 5th!