More Than Fifty Maryland Businesses Oppose Cove Point LNG Export Facility for Fracked gas

April 1, 2014

Dominion Cove PointAs MD PSC Deadline Looms, Letter Submitted to Commission Details Economic and Environmental Harms of Cove Point Site

April 1, 2014 – Just ahead of an April 2nd deadline for comments to be submitted to the Maryland Public Service Commission, 50 Maryland businesses – including Blue Moon Rising and Moon Shadow Cafe, Three Green Pears, and Financial West Group — are signaling their strong opposition to the plans for the highly controversial liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facility at Cove Point on the Chesapeake Bay in Maryland.

The signers of the joint letter speaking out against the facility are the business members of the Chesapeake Sustainable Business Council and Green America’s Green Business Network.

The letter states: “We believe that Dominion’s proposed Cove Point project will not serve our state’s interests, whether in terms of economic benefits, environmental gains, or positive impacts on public health and welfare. This massive project will pollute our air and waterways and Maryland ratepayers may well experience increases in natural gas prices. Maryland needs to build on our renewable energy infrastructure which will promote our best economic future – and not invest in fossil fuel projects that are bad for the economy and that will only exacerbate the climate crisis.

We oppose the Cove Point plant to export liquefied natural gas and we oppose ‘fracked gas’ in general from a business perspective:

* Climate change is exacerbated by greenhouse gases emitted throughout the fracking process, posing a number of challenges to businesses, particularly small businesses, such as supply chain disruptions, damage to infrastructure, and rising transportation costs. Maryland’s coastal communities will be heavily affected by climate change in particular.

* Fracking creates heavily industrialized landscapes, radically altering community character and crowding out economic drivers that are dependent on natural amenities, including tourism, agriculture, food and beverage, and recreation.

* Exporting gas at Cove Point would create a 549 percent increase in massive tanker traffic. It would also put thousands throughout the region at risk from expansions to existing pipeline infrastructure that already is prone to leaks and ruptures that can cause fires and explosions.

* The Cove Point export facility would negatively impact the state’s plan for a 25 percent reduction of greenhouse gases by 2020.

* Cove Point would steer resources to the fossil fuel economy and only produce 130 permanent jobs, whereas, for the same costs, the creation of offshore wind could result in 7,500 jobs.

* Business owners, including farmers, pay higher prices for scarce resources like water and labor because of increased competition from drillers.

* Fracking has greatly reduced or eliminated property values, and is making mortgages and insurance policies difficult to acquire.

* If the Cove Point project proceeds, it will encourage more companies to expand fracking across our region, including in Maryland, where currently no drilling occurs.

This proposal will benefit neither the Maryland public nor our economy –only the gas industry will profit. As businesspeople with a strong stake in the vibrancy of the Maryland economy and in our natural environment and resources, we strongly urge you to deny Dominion’s application for the Cove Point LNG export terminal and power plant.”

To see the full text of the letter go to http://www.greenamerica.org/pdf/2014-Cove-Point.pdf

Green America’s Policy Director Fran Teplitz said: “Given the toll that the Cove Point export facility will take on Maryland’s economy and environment we believe there is no way this mega-project can be considered to serve Maryland’s best interests. Maryland businesses with a commitment to sustainability recognize the need to support renewable energy that will have far greater benefits for our state.”

Elliott Perfetti, operations manager, Blue Moon Rising and Moon Shadow Café in McHenry, said: “This Cove Point project means a lot here in Garrett County; we are just finishing the construction of an eco-friendly vacation community and Cove Point would mean the frack attack would start here in Garrett County and surely it would negatively impact our mission as well as the existing tourism businesses of Garrett County’.”

Savitri Khalsa, owner, Three Green Pears in Silver Spring, said: “As a business leader and resident of Maryland, I oppose creating a fracked gas facility at Cove Point. I urge the Maryland Public Service Commission to consider all of the environmental damage inherent in this project. The Chesapeake Bay region is beautiful and fragile and not worth polluting for dirty energy.”

Richard W. Torgerson, registered principal, Financial West Group in Westminster, said: “Now is the time for Maryland to focus on development of our renewable energy infrastructure, not on fossil fuel projects that threaten human and environmental health. The success of our economic future will rely on clean energy, and that is the sector in which we must invest.”

Stephen Shaff, executive director, Chesapeake Sustainable Business Council, added: “This is not just a battle about Cove Point. If approved, this massive project will surely put pressure on Maryland to permit fracking and expand fracking in neighboring states and more reliance on unsustainable energy systems. At what point will we find the political will to stop decisions like Cove Point that mostly serve the interests of non-local industry at our economic and environmental expense?”

ABOUT THE GROUPS

Chesapeake Sustainable Business Council is a business-led educational and advocacy organization whose mission is to promote sustainable business viability, awareness, and impact within the Chesapeake region (MD, DC and VA). More at http://www.csbcouncil.org

Green America is a national membership organization that works to harness economic power—the strength of consumers, investors, businesses, and the marketplace—to create a socially just and environmentally sustainable society. Green America has a Green Business Network of 3,000 businesses screened for their social and environmental impacts. Green America has over 100 business members based in Maryland. More at www.GreenAmerica.org and at www.GreenBusinessNetwork.org

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17 Responses to More Than Fifty Maryland Businesses Oppose Cove Point LNG Export Facility for Fracked gas

  1. Anon on April 1, 2014 at 11:44 am

    Climate change is a joke

    • KB on April 1, 2014 at 4:13 pm

      Do you mean it’s a joke as in, it’s so obvious it’s happening and how can everyone not realize it and be on the same page? Or, do you actually mean that you don’t think it’s happening?

      If it’s the latter, wow. Simply, “wow.” Scary.

      • ANONYMOUS3 on April 1, 2014 at 9:31 pm

        Your Scary tree hugger!!1 I felt the “Warming all winter! Knucklehead loser!

        • For Real on April 2, 2014 at 6:50 am

          Hey “Anon” and “Anonymous3″, please educate yourself before reverting to blanket statements and immature name calling! A normal “Winter” should be cold. However we rarely have a “normal” winter and more mild winters below average. This winter here in MD I would say was closer to a normal full winter than we’ve experienced in years. However, in others areas colder than average winters could be in fact due to global warming. But that’s more of a rarity with warmer than average winters being the norm. Global warming causes erratic weather patterns. I’d hope you’d already know this but the truth is hard to handle sometimes isn’t it.

          • diehardstroker on April 2, 2014 at 10:13 pm

            I have to agree with the “ANON”‘s. CO2 and CH4 (methane) make up 0.04% and 0.00017% of the atmosphere, O2 and N2 21.9% and 78%. Thermodynamically, heat retention at the current levels of CO2 and CH4 in the atmosphere contributes < +0.04°C to the atmospheric temperature. As the effect is logarithmic and CO2 can only absorb and reflect energy in specific wavelengths, doubling CO2 does not double heat absorbed. Increasing the concentration to 800 ppm results in an additional +0.08°C increase in temperature. The maximum contribution of temperature due to CO2 occurs around 1000 ppm, with a total temperature increase of approximately 0.15°C. There is no feedback, recirculation or trapping of the heat energy as it is radiated in all directions, including back into outer space. This is why none of the models reflect reality. This is why Global Warming/Climate Change/Climate Disruption is a hoax. It denies basic thermodynamics.

      • Terry on April 4, 2014 at 9:35 am

        It snowed at the End of May… Global Warming argument is invalid.

  2. Paul on April 1, 2014 at 12:31 pm

    Looking at the businesses that signed this letter, I do not see any Calvert County businesses. I do see several solar and alternative energy companies. This seems like a major conflict of interests to me.

    • KB on April 1, 2014 at 4:18 pm

      How does what happens in the state of Maryland not impact all of the state?

      Why are so many people focusing on that they think it will only impact Calvert County and argue that no one else has a right to weigh in and be heard?

      Didn’t the “local” focus kind of get thrown out once you decided to support an expansion that will now export overseas?

      • ANONYMOUS3 on April 1, 2014 at 9:32 pm

        Go cry to algore! loser! build it Baby!!!

    • For Real on April 2, 2014 at 6:57 am

      There will be no Calvert County businesses that thrive if this is built! There’s NO future in dirty energy and no future in Calvert County if the Commissioners get their way. Why build something that has absolutely no long term future and that threatens a multitude of our ecology when there are viable, effective options?

  3. Joe M on April 1, 2014 at 3:56 pm

    I’m glad they did speak up. After the travesty that has been the Calvert County Commissioners’ subversion of democracy by shutting down public comment, going on the attack for Dominion, and expressing approval of the project to FERC without engaging their voters, I’ll take any help I can get. Their points are valid. The project will bring mostly more traffic, more pollution, and not much else to Calvert county. It will change the disposition of a bucolic fishing and tourism community permanently, sacrificing the viability of other core industries – for what? 20 years in taxes and 70 (count em, 70) whole jobs? Our esteemed Commissioners say the county needs the money badly (despite having a net position of over $200M), but they can’t tell us why or what it’s for. Smell strange to anyone else? And that’s not just the sulfur and other pollutants in the pipe gas coming down to be removed in Calvert county and God knows what done with it.

    • ANONYMOUS3 on April 1, 2014 at 9:32 pm

      Warm your house up with your windmill dufus!! HAHAHAHA!!!!

      • Joe M on April 2, 2014 at 9:39 am

        I’d like to warm it up with natural gas. Too bad prices will only go up in the US and there is no way we’ll see a project to actually pipe natural gas for domestic use in Calvert County so that the average citizen benefit from the unconventional oil and gas boom. LNG export is major disincentive to develop any kind of domestic natural gas infrastructure. You do understand that this project is not providing gas for use in Calvert County, right?

      • KB on April 2, 2014 at 12:42 pm

        Again, “wow.” What a mature way to have a “discussion.” Dufus? Seriously. You actually wrote that and called someone that for stating a well-though out, concise opinion?

  4. Bash on April 2, 2014 at 6:21 am

    They are inconsistent. First, they say that it will produce only 130 jobs. Then they say that it will negatively affect businesses in the region because of competition for labor. By that measure, offshore wind (7500 jobs???) would be much worse.

    The global warming hysteria is more religious than scientific.

  5. diehardstroker on April 2, 2014 at 2:07 pm

    Interesting that not a single business is in Calvert, St. Mary’s or Charles counties.

    • Terry on April 4, 2014 at 10:09 am

      I was curious about these business too… so I did a little research on them.
      Blue Moon Rising: Eco-Tourism out of Deep Creek, MD
      Moon Shadow Café: ‘farm fresh’ restaurant out of Deep Creek, MD; purchases from farms out of Garrett County
      Three Green Pears: craft jewelry, home business based out of the Bethesda area
      Financial West Group: Investment Group base out of Westlake Village, CA with a “Maryland Office”.

      It would be interesting to see what other business came out and if they had any ties into Southern MD.