October 1, 2012

Standing With 9/11 First Responders In Defense of Air, Homes, and Health

Join us again tomorrow at 90 Jacobs Rd., Minisink, NY at 7am and throughout the day. This is a family friendly event. Children and dogs are encouraged and can remain on the neighboring property owners' land if safety requires it. Call me at 570-269-9589 if you need help finding us. For additional updates, photos, and video, check out the Stop the Minisink Compressior Station page on Facebook.

After 16 months of fighting through the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the small community of Minisink NY, including many 9/11 first responders, came together this morning to block the construction of a compressor station that will service the Millenium natural gas pipeline.

Over the Delaware River and through the woods from my hometown, at 7am, about 30 local residents assembled in the driveway of the former cow pasture that is sited for the two-engine compressor. The engines will emit 61,000 tons of volatile organic compounds and pollutants into the air each year, which is especially dangerous for children and local 9/11 first responders like Nicholas Russo, who requires throat injections for a respiratory disorder he has after four months of relief work at Ground Zero.

“As a first responder of 9/11, I have to strongly argue against the gas compressor in Minisink. Many of my colleagues are suffering and some have died as a result of the toxins in the air we were exposed to at ground zero,” said John Odland, a Minisink resident.

The group turned four state police squad cars and eight Millenium gas pipeline contractors away from the site, but after Orange County sheriffs deputies arrived, the blockade was forced to disperse to the sides or be arrested. As company trucks began to filter in, a brave Minisink father of two stepped in front of the trucks and was arrested. More details on legal support will be available shortly.

FERC voting members have all been appointed or re-appointed by President Barack Obama to permit interstate natural gas and utility infrastructure.