Banners Dropped, Residents Organize Picket Against Power Plant in Orange County NY.

Early this morning, Hudson Valley Earth First! And local residents enraged by CPV’s fracked gas power plant dropped 2 banners over the I-84 highway overpass adjacent to the construction site on route 6 in Wawayanda, NY. The banners hung for almost 3 hours, during which a morning picket organized separately by Protect Orange County  made its presence known from 7 -10am out front the site as workers continued “Site Preparation” to build the toxic CPV Valley Energy Center.

“No Fracked Power Plant Here” over I-84

Today’s picket was organized the same day attorney Michael Sussman must submit a formal response to CPV’s claims against his recent filing for an injunction. It is unclear when we will hear a decision from the judge. If granted, construction on site would be halted for 2 months while the court case is resolved. In court last Thursday, CPV claimed all present activities on site would be limited to “site preparation.” It is also possible a voluntary injunction would be agreed on by CPV with the judge to stop work once “site preparation” was finished. What exactly that means is questionable. It would seem the earth moving, digging, clearing and electrical work on site now is not considered more than “site preparation” by CPV although it is negatively impacting the sensitive wetlands and species of concern on site, all in question by this court case.

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Sussman’s lawsuit argues for a new supplemental Environmental Impact Statement. The recent listing of the Northern Long Eared bat as federally threatened is one reason to take a hard look and reevaluate the project, the recent ban on fracking in New York State contradicting the permitting of infrastructure projects, transportation and processing of fracked gas, is another. Not to mention the poor job of letting locals know the project was happening in the first place. While the legal case remains in limbo, what is clear is the widespread opposition by local residents!

Despite widespread opposition and unanswered questions, the transformation of this beautiful forest wetland and field into an industrial zone is underway. Located 65 miles northwest of New York City, the CPV Valley Energy Center is a 720 megawatt combined cycle natural gas powered electric power generating facility with ultra low sulfur diesel backup. The project will be constructed by a joint venture consisting of Skanska USA Civil Northeast, Inc., Burns & McDonnell Engineering Company, Inc. and ECCO III Enterprises, Inc. Perrecca Electric is doing electrical work. Construction will take 32 months with commercial operation projected in early 2018.

The earth moving, unloading of electrical boxes and destruction of this area is being facilitated by these companies by the authority of the Wawayanda Town board, Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and other state/town agencies for an unnecessary power plant that most residents oppose.

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A State Trooper talking with a Skanska worker

Around nine am today town of Wawayanda code enforcement came to site and told protesters the only permit the workers had was for ‘Storm water Management.’ If this is the only permit given, how does electrical and other work count as Storm Water Management?

Skanska workers were slowed down by protesters and redirected from certain entrances because of the inconvenience of our presence multiple times. When asked if they had permits to come in off the highway pull off, Skanska workers appearing to be management said yes. When someone asked the State Troopers to check and prove it to us, they became disgruntled and refused. Skanska is the same company responsible for building an unnecessary and cruel animal vivisection lab in Seattle Washington . It is clear we are up against a lot, but spirits are high and resistance is fertile!

The Ecology of a Police State – NYC Event

Come find out about the intersections of mass incarceration, criminal justice and the environment.

An organizer with the Prison Ecology Project will be discussing the Project’s effort to get the EPA to recognize environmental justice impacts on prisoners, and an effort to stop the construction of a new maximum security federal prison on 700 acres of endangered species habitat in eastern Kentucky.

We’ll also be showing an excerpt from Up The Ridge, a documentary about the prison-building boom in Appalachia’s coal country, and other short films on the prison/ecology connection.

Requested Donations: $6 $10 $15 sliding scale for event (no one turned away for inability to pay.) Money raised will support the Prison Ecology Project

Location/Directions: THE COMMONS is an open and collaborative movement building space, near the Hoyt-Schermerhorn subway stop in downtown Brooklyn. at 388 Atlantic Avenue, Between Hoyt and Bond.
http://thecommonsbrooklyn.org/
https://www.facebook.com/events/111433105868507/
For more info: PrisonEcology.org

Check out the PEP crowdfunding campaign: http://igg.me/at/prisonecology

Event co-sponsored by the National Lawyers Guild, Prison Legal News/Human Rights Defense Center, New York Environmental Law and Justice Project, National Police Accountability Project, Sylvia Rivera Law Project, Hudson Valley Earth First!, Marxist Education Project, NYC Anarchist Black Cross, Movement Media, Prison Project of Sante Fe and others TBA

Please support ‘More Trees Records’ upcoming radio podcast.

This new and exciting radio show put together by a bad as HVEF!er will consist of stories and report backs from the front-lines of ecological resistance and struggles for liberation, as well as playing music, having guests to chat on various topics and more.

Please check out the fundraising page here:
https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/can-you-help-more-trees-records-size-up#/story

If you can’t donate, please spread this far and wide to your networks!!!

For the Wild,

a little bird…

ACTION- Banner Hang: “Competitive Power Ventures= Minisink Compressor Station Two Sides- Same Coin”

On the morning of May the 19th individuals from the Hudson Valley Earth First! movement returned to Jacobs Road in Westtown, NY.

Jacobs Road is home to the now built fracked gas compressor station that many opposed during its construction. A banner was hung near the entrance that says “Competitive Power Ventures= Minisink Compressor Station – Two Sides- Same Coin”

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This location was chosen because both of these companies support one another- As early as 2010 CPV and MCS came to an agreement:

“to  construct  a seven mile, 16” lateral [pipeline] to  provide  the  proposed  650  MW CPV Valley  Energy  Center  generation  plant  in  Wawayanda.”

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Connecting these pieces of infrastructure is something that should be spread far and wide,  gas companies will continue to use this area- our bioregion – as a hub for natural gas unless we make the necessary connections and stop them.

The motive has always been for MCS to sell gas to CPV, one couldn’t happen without the other. Yet there has been little public mention by either companies-or town government(s) of this partnership.

Actions like these are very easy to recreate and pose little to no risk, but can be very effective in relaying an unheard message- such as this one. Construction on the CPV plant could begin as early as June and although a banner won’t stop the plant alone, every action helps to  sustain the culture of resistance we need to win.

We’re here- we’re watching- and we’re up early.

Forever for the wild,

Your friendly neighborhood Hudson Valley Earth First!er’s

A Compilation In Defense Of The Earth! Now Available Online

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Almost exactly one year ago Hudson Valley Earth First! had it’s first pressing of “A Compilation In Defense of The Earth” Now you can pick up a copy via More Trees Records or when you run into one of us at a local event or speaking engagement! they’re only 3-7$ (or josh fox money if you got it) and it includes a kick ass lyric book with essays by some of the bands!

DISC 1

(A)Truth – Gaia

billXnye – Insect Superiority

Selfbeater – Greed=Oppression

All Torn Up – Revolting

Godmode – Teenage Bedwetter

Mutual Assured Destruction – Consumer Death Squad

  Psyche War – Wasted Days

Cell 63 – Burn

Apogee Sound Club – You Fill Me With Inertia

Praxis – Iron Triangle of Death

Cop Problem – Bear Witness

Exshitstence – Quickening The Slaughter Of Us And The Land

 Living Laser – Life is Fragile

Inner Dam – Splinter Off

No More Victims – Self Inflicted Genocide

Dead Empires – Blackout

Wild’s Reprisal – Ethics of Respect for Nature

                                                                        DISC 2                                                                                                             

The Peeps – On The Lam

The Armedalite Rifles – The Big Plastic Explosion

Common Folk – Life

Under Some Bridges – Do What You Dare

O’ Great North – We All Live Downstream

Jewelweed – Relatin’

Rye N’ Clover – The Long Way Home

Mike And Ruthy – Drill On The Horizon

Woodspider – C’est La Vida Fuerte

 Little Moss – Road Block

Dan Mac and the Bullet – To Collapse Drink A Toast

 Batting A Thousand – You’ll Be Okay, I’ll Be Okay

 Yung Wu – Words To Come

Speed the Plough – Final Day

Amozan – Shrubs

Glenn Mercer Band – Rock n’ Roll

Mighty Girl – Where Darkness Comes

EVENT: “Hudson Valley Earth First! invites you to a weekend camp May 15th-17th”

Dear fellow earth defenders, rabble rousers, radical ecologists and anarchist comrades…

Hudson Valley Earth First! Invites you to a weekend long bio regional round up to connect with the land while sharing skills, stories, meals and fire this May 15th -17th in the 4,315 acre Ward Pound  Ridge Reservation in Westchester County NY (occupied Lenape territory).

A ANARCHIST BOOKFAIR

 ​The park is home to a unique combination of meadows, sandy moraines, vernal ponds and rustic woodlands. Evergreen plantations, oak, hickory and maple forests, wooded wetlands, and the Cross and Stone Hill Rivers, provide habitat for many species including rare wildflowers, newly discovered dragonflies, elusive bobcat and other wildlife. Hudson Valley Earth first! acknowledges the history of colonization which displaced native communities throughout the Hudson River Valley or more appropriately named the “river that flows two ways” or “Muhheakantuck” as it was called by natives. As the people were colonized so too was the land; genocide and ecocide. With that in mind, we are reaching out to chiefs from the Ramapough Lenape Nation (the closest identifiable relative) about our presence on the land and to forge links in our struggles.

We are now accepting submissions for workshops, presentations, talks, and skill-shares.

Please write us at hudsonvalleyearthfirst@gmail.com to confirm attendance, submit ideas, get more details or help out with supplies.

There will be time for hiking, tree climbing, music & poetry and enjoying the splendor of the wild.

Location:

4 Reservation Rd

There’s a train station near by if needed, just let us know so we can arrange a few group pick ups

http://as0.mta.info/mnr/schedules/sched_results.cfm?n=y

Town Board Meeting Disrupted on Earth Day!

Also visit Protect Orange County and/or Neighbors United For the Facts for updates.


On the evening of April 22nd about 30 people from the Minisink Area attended a Rally outside the Town of Waywanada Town Hall. This effort was orchestrated to continue pressuring the planning board, letting them know that their rapid permitting of the Competitive Power Ventures (CPV) Valley Energy Center is abhorrent. As the clock moved close to 7pm the rally of 30 took space inside with signs like “Don’t sell us out” and messaging that encompass a concern for the Hudson Valley Bioregion, and all of its inhabitants. CPV was on the top of the board’s formal agenda and Vice President Steve Remillard once again was in attendance. CPV is currently seeking a Power Purchase Agreement with the State of NY so they can break ground as early as June of this year.

Outside Waywayanda Town Hall

When the first board members started filing in there was a notable look of disgust that we were in attendance, with one of the board members groaning and muttering “it’s useless.” This set the tone for a turn of events outside of their favor. At that moment a shift in energy was about the room, One audience goer started the heckling by clapping and sarcastically exclaiming “You’re all doing such a good job here, keep up the good work.” It was apparent to all of the community members in attendance that their presence was being ignored, they knew the amendments to CPVs already approved 640MW energy center would be voted on unanimously so it was important that the community rather than mope and give up– stood up. The minor mitigations mentioned during the board meeting suggested a “greener CPV” which of course is anything but true.

This could be viewed as the first collective Direct Action in this campaign against CPV. Direct Action is defined as doing something without asking “power” for permission. When the whole crowd started jeering the board members chanting “shame on you” this was not taken so well by the board, the gavel cracked -“SHUT UP!” exclaimed by a councilwoman. But the crowd could not be subdued. In an attempt to ignore the chorus of people chanting the board tried to continue on and take their vote- But when “Any neighs?” was asked the community chimed in with a resounding “neigh.” At this point Steven Remillard fled the room, feeling the pressure on his back, but not before snapping a few pics on his iPhone and slithering away before two State Troopers arrived.

 Despite the expected vote of approval, this event was an exercise in community empowerment, a much needed escalation of tactics in the face of corrupt officials and a greedy corporation. This must continue to happen until this project is stopped. The “host community” is not impressed by the impunity of the Town of Waywayanda Board, a point that was made abundantly clear last night.

 This is just the beginning- We won’t stop until you do.

Source: Times Harold Record
Source: Times Harold Record

Hudson Valley Earth First! is a 100% volunteer run collective that funds its actions and operations by tabeling, doing workshops, and from your donations.

for any booking inquiries please contact

HudsonValleyEarthFirst@gmail.com!

Emotional Crowd Weighs In On Power Plant Planned for Wawayanda

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Pramilla Malick of Westtown addresses the planning board at Wednesday night’s hearing in Wawayanda. DAWN J. BENKO/For the Times Herald-Record
By Richard J. Bayne
Times Herald-Record

WAWAYANDA – “An overflow crowd of about 400 packed Town Hall on Wednesday night as the town Planning Board took comments on site plan revisions for the proposed $900 million gas-fired power-generating plant Competitive Power Ventures wants to build on a 122-acre parcel off Route 6.

About 30 people spoke during the contentious 90-minute hearing. The crowd was about evenly divided between union members, who have supported the plant for the 500 construction jobs its backers have said it would create, and environmentalists and local residents, who voiced fears about toxic gases, cancer, asthma and plummeting property values.

“Twenty years from now, this plant will be obsolete,” said Gregory Winner, a Wawayanda resident. “This is a mistake, and we will have sold the soul of this town.”

“I love you guys,” said town resident Madeline Shaw, indicating the union members. “I want you to work. But somebody tell me, who is benefiting from this?”

Local labor leaders, including Todd Diorio, president of the Hudson Valley Building and Construction Trades Council, reminded opponents that the proposed plant has passed all its reviews.

Responding to complaints from environmentalists who said that out-of-area union workers were packing the hearing, Sam Fratto, business manager of IBEW Local 363, pointed out union members in the audience who live in the town. “If you use electricity, you need this plant,” Fratto said.

Maureen Halahan, president and CEO of the Orange County Partnership, spoke in favor of the plant, saying it would create much-needed jobs and millions in taxes.

Steve Remillard, CPV’s vice president, development, opened the hearing by outlining the proposed site plan revisions, including altering the entrance on Route 6, reducing the overall footprint by about 18 percent and minimizing the impact on a nearby wetland.

Remillard said CPV is prepared to go ahead with construction, even if the board turns down the requested changes. The Planning Board chairwoman, Barbara Parsons, said the vote on the revisions is expected April 22. The plant has passed all air-quality reviews, including studies done by the state Department of Environmental Conservation. Remillard said construction is expected to start early in the fourth quarter of this year, and possibly earlier. Remillard said the plant is still waiting for its power purchase agreement with the New York Power Authority.

The planned 640-megawatt plant, which has been going through the approval process for the past six years, would be located on a parcel bounded by routes 6 and 17M and I-84.

The firm has agreed to pay the Town of Wawayanda $8.2 million over 22 years under a “host” agreement CPV negotiated with a local development corporation created by the town. Wawayanda will also receive $2.8 million in property taxes over the same period under an agreement between CPV and the Orange County Industrial Development Corp.”

dbayne@th-record.com

Upcoming public hearing April 8th – CPV requests amended site plan – Just Say No

CPV is requesting amendment to the conditional site plan granted to them by the Town of Wawayanda Planning Board

Let your voices against this outrage be heard and give em hell!

No CPV Power Plant! No Compromise!

Wawayanda Town Hall, Ridgebury Hill Road, Slate Hill, New York 10973 on April 8, 2015 at 7:30 P.M.

http://townofwawayanda.com/index.php/doc-center/public-hearings-public-notices/649-cpv-public-hearing-april-8-2014/file.html

On Winning- and the “NY State of Mind”

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Ya’ll should also enjoy this recently written article written by Sasha, of the Earth First! Journal Collective!  

In the beginning of 2015, to the astonishment of many-  Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced he will be putting forth a statewide ban on Horizontal hydraulic fracturing (HDD or “fracking”) in so called New York. For years, the prospect of fracking within the “empire” state loomed over our heads. With many fearing just “how many people have to feel the impacts of drilling first hand to convince the state we don’t need this?” The fact that fracking is now banned in New York is certainly a victory, owed to grassroots persistence not Cuomo or his administration. While the ban is a big sigh of relief, it certainly falls flat. If we’ve learned anything from our former (farce) of a moratorium on fracking it’s that “banning” the drilling for fracked gas on paper actually has done nothing to stop growing infrastructure projects and by all stretches of the imagination cannot. From the gas storage facility in Finger Lakes, all the pipelines crisscrossing the state, the recently built Minisink Compressor station, and beyond.

 

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Regionally, our networks need to escalate our resistance to gas infrastructure by cross pollination, skill shares and shut them down with creative and effective direct action.

Locally we should turn our attention to the Power Plant being planned for western Orange County and throw this project into the trash before its too late!

Your friendly neighborhood Hudson Valley Earth First!ers are continuing to meet with community members, form bonds, stare at lines on maps/piles of documents, and generally get shit done from; speaking all over the north-east and beyond, showing up to these big wigs conferences and business meetings souring their self-congratulatory audiences.

what happens next?

Now we must show Competitive Power Ventures they should have no hopes of building it’s proposed Valley View Energy Power plant, A 640-megawatt dirty gas project that if built in Quarter Four of 2015 will take up 30 acres of an 122 acre tract, (of mostly marshy wetlands) it will include two fabulous smokestacks that will pump out VOC’s as easy as 1,2,3 and above all else will cost a cool $900M to build.. All that for the promise of $2.8 Million in tax revenue and about 25 permanent jobs. Fantastic.

CPV Valley Energy’s website erroneously claims the Valley Energy Center is some kind of “custom-designed solution to meet the growing electricity needs of the region.” When the fact still remains: the inhabitants of this area want no part in this filth at all. If we allow this plague on the “Hudson Valley” we should not be surprised when greed- and growth for the sake of growth prevail. The key investors of CPV’s nightmare- Warbug Pincus and Steven Remillard, have no right to decide what is or is not vital to this ecosystem based on some arbitrary EIS approval that points out exactly what we are up for if this project ever became reality.

“The Final EIS evaluates the environmental impacts identified in the DEIS Scope, and the comments provided in response to the DEIS. Impacts evaluated include impacts on land and land use, visual resources, air quality, noise, wetlands, and water resources, socioeconomics, traffic, cultural resources, soils, geology, and seismology, and wildlife”

*taken from FEIS
approved

We must always remember that these industry types are not our friends nor our community and are the exact same people(s) who actively to plan to destroy both. Reading all of CPV’s findings or “best practices” to maintain compliance with the state, and it’s agencies are completely nonsensical- from noting “Ideal conditions for threatened Bog Turtles,” finding the Georgia Bulrush, a plant Species of Greatest Conservation Need, disrespecting the burial grounds of the Ramapough-Lenape Tribe, potential impacts to Indiana Bats and migratory songbirds, and the list goes on and on (Page 30 EIS). But these things are of no importance to the Gas industry they only see dollar bills and you and I are “misinformed” “arrogant” or “criminal” for seeing through the smoke and mirrors.

Conveniently- Competitive Power Ventures have been seeking “New York’s” “energy highway” initiative- which gives funding to energy projects…. If Cuomo or Dr. Zucker were truly sincere about their concerns of health impacts the “energy highway” wouldn’t be a fast lane to dirty energy (The now built Minisink Compressor Station not only applied for energy to highway, but pointed to CPV as a reason why they should be granted funding before it was even built!). With all of the permits in the hands of CPV  they are now seeking out the remaining 3/4th of the funding. Local community members have gone as far to demand the state does not give a single cent, sending a community written letter to Albany however, when Competitive Power Ventures submitted it’s Energy to Highway application it was well…. drooled upon by the following:

sellouts

Our resistance has been seeded all over- and soon will take root. Our collective power can only flourish this spring.

A truly holistic approach to combating this menace is underway encompassing many ways of thinking- acting, and reacting Steve Remillard may think he’s on the “1 yard line” but we have the homefield advantage.

We will win.

Hudson Valley Earth First! is a 100% volunteer run collective that funds its actions and operations by tabeling, doing workshops, and from your donations.

for any booking inquiries please contact

HudsonValleyEarthFirst@gmail.com!

Written by Crabgrass

cross posted from More Trees Records

Graphics by Crabgrass

Video by CG