The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), is a rogue federal agency charged with reviewing all major inter-state fracked gas projects – including pipelines, compressor stations, and export terminals.1 They also have broad powers to set rules and rates for state and regional electric grids, which can have a huge impact on the price of solar and wind power vs fossil fuels.2
You probably remember that FERC is notorious for abusing its legal authority and peoples’ rights. They routinely strip people of their legal right to challenge pipeline projects until property rights have been violated, forests cut, and people are forced to live next to dangerous fossil fuel projects.3
For the last few months, dozens of communities have had a reprieve, of sorts, because without a quorum of three commissioners FERC can’t approve any fracked gas infrastructure. Right now only acting chair Cheryl LaFleur remains.4 And we aim to keep it that way. Click here to send a letter your Senators and tell them to vote NO on Trump’s FERC nominees.
No Senator who claims to care about the climate, property rights, or the environment should vote to install any FERC nominees for a five year term. Especially, not Donald Trump’s nominees who will be expected to be loyal to the most corrupt and investigated man ever to sit in the oval office.
Nor are these nominees in any way acceptable:
Neal Chaterjee spent most of his career working for Mitch McConnell to oppose climate science, dismantle clean air legislation, and serve the fossil fuel industry.5 He was a lead author of the letter signed by many Republicans asking Trump to pull out of the Paris Climate agreement.6
Robert Powelson worked on the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission to oversee a massive expansion of fracking. Pennsylvania drillers poisoned groundwater, damaged our climate and killed workers with explosions and unsafe work sites — all on Powelson’s watch.7 Even more insulting, he said people opposing pipeline projects are engaged in a “jihad” to keep natural gas from reaching new markets. That’s not only racist and inflammatory, it’s an incredibly inappropriate opinion for someone who’s job will include listening to public feedback on pipeline projects.8
This is not a partisan political issue – this is a people issue. Every Senator needs to hear from you now about this impending vote – but especially Democrats and moderate Republicans who claim to support the Paris climate agreement and other actions on climate change.
1 – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/what-ferc-is-and-why-it-matters_us_592df000e4b075342b52c114
2 – https://beyondextremeenergy.org/outline-for-ferc-reform/
3 – https://www.platts.com/videos/2017/may/snapshot-ferc-gas-pipeline-projects-051117
4 – http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/331152-another-ferc-commissioner-announces-departure
5 – http://www.politico.com/story/2015/09/gop-congress-climate-pact-paris-213382
6 – https://www.vox.com/2017/6/1/15726726/trump-paris-climate-agreement-republicans
7 – https://stateimpact.npr.org/pennsylvania/tag/pipeline-building-boom/
8 – https://stateimpact.npr.org/pennsylvania/2017/03/23/amid-criticism-utility-regulator-walks-back-jihad-remark/