Tag Archives: Army Corps of Engineers

Feds Grant Approval for Southern Portion of Keystone XL

28 Jun

—By / Mother Jones

The pipeline will move all the oil from Canada’s tar sands south.

Not long after delaying the approval of the Keystone XL, President Obama announced that the administration is expediting consideration of permits for the pipeline’s southern portion. And that’s exactly what happened on Wednesday, according to the New York Times:

The Army Corps of Engineers on Monday told TransCanada, which wants to build a 1,700-mile pipeline to carry heavy crude from Alberta to the Gulf Coast, that it could begin construction on the portion of the proposed pipeline that would end at the gulf port of Nederland, Tex. The Corps of Engineers is still reviewing permits for a section of the pipeline beginning at a major oil depot in Cushing, Okla., and linking up with the final leg ending at the gulf.

Nebraska is still working out an alternative route around sensitive ecosystems in the state, and there’s still quite a lot of opposition there to building it at all. But in the meantime, the other half of the pipeline is moving ahead full steam.

New Orleans Hurricane Protection Plan To Rely on Wetland and Delta Restoration

26 Jan

Encroaching seas have eroded southeastern Louisiana.

By Mark Fischetti  /  Scientific America

More than six years after Hurricane Katrina plowed into New Orleans and the Mississippi River delta, a plan has finally emerged to protect the area from future storms. It relies heavily on the restoration of wetlands to cut down high surges of ocean water like those that flooded the city in 2005—somewhat of a surprise, considering past efforts focused on levees and seawalls.

Last week, after prolonged deliberations over competing plans between state and federal agencies, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and cities and parishes (counties), the state’s Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority released the Louisiana Comprehensive Master Plan for a Sustainable Coast. If all its provisions are carried out, the work would require $50 billion over 50 years.

Land that would be lost (red) if the protection plan is not undertaken.

The plan includes maps of what the state’s refurbished delta would look like from the air by 2061. It also shows maps of the wetlands that would disappear by 2061 (see image below), as well as the extent of flooding that storms such as Katrina would bring, if the projects aren’t built. Southern Louisiana has lost 1,883 square miles of wetlands during the past 80 years, an area three-quarters the size of Delaware, largely because of erosion that has been catalyzed by hundreds of miles of manmade navigation channels and oil and gas pipeline canals. Most of that land will not be regained. But if the plan’s projects succeed, by 2042 the state would begin to gain more land annually than it loses, and by 2061 it would gain an average of about 2.5 square miles a year.

Read the rest of the article here.

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Puerto Rican Pipeline Protests Extend to New York

10 Jun

NEW YORK—Local Puerto Rican leaders and activists gathered outside Federal Plaza on Thursday to demand that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers deny the permits for a proposed gas pipeline requested by the Puerto Rico Electric and Power Authority (PREPA).

“This gas pipeline project being proposed for Puerto Rico is very destructive, very costly, and it’s unnecessary,” said David Galarza, organizer of the protest. Mr. Galarza organized a group called NY Against PR Gas Pipeline to rally support from New York City Puerto Ricans.

The protest comes days before the Puerto Rican Day Parade, which has been dedicated to the country’s natural environment. The parade will march up Fifth Avenue in Midtown on Sunday, June 12, beginning at 11 a.m.

“This 92-mile gas pipeline project is going to run through the central mountain range, up and down rivers, up and down mountains, through communities, by the schools, by homes, [and] near the beachfront. It’s going to displace thousands of people from their homes,” Galarza added.

The 24-inch diameter pipeline would cut through 92 miles of the roughly 100-mile-long island. Dubbed Via Verde (Green Way) by the Puerto Rican government, but referred to as Via de la Muerte (Death’s Way) by those in opposition of the project, the proposed pipeline traverses Puerto Rico from the EcoElectrica Liquid Natural Gas Terminal to the northern thermoelectric power plants, affecting some 200,000 Puerto Ricans.

“The people of Puerto Rico have already decided that this is not what they want in their yard, in their home. President Obama is about to visit Puerto Rico. He’s looking for alternative energy sources. What better source of alternative energy than the island that has sun, that has air, [and] that has water. There are so many different ways that energy can be produced and this is what they have decided to do,” said Martha Loriano, representative from the New York City Chapter of the National Congress for Puerto Rican Rights.

President Obama will be the first U.S. President, since John F. Kennedy, to visit Puerto Rico in half a century next Tuesday.

The project faces fierce public opposition in the mainland. A May 1 protest this year drew over 30,000 protesters, despite torrential rain. According to a March 11 poll by El Nuevo Dia, 70 percent of the citizens of Puerto Rico oppose the project.

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