It’s California, not West Virginia Gov. Brown

I’m not completely surprised when I read a story like this taking place in West Virginia, land of coal miners needing to justify fossils fuels for their livelihood. This article in the Guardian today talks about a group of people up in the trees trying to block a pipeline construction project going through the forest they own (or did before eminent domain) and trying to keep their pristine stream clean, a stream that they can now drink from directly.

But we are encountering exactly the same mentality from California’s Governor regarding the Delta Tunnels.

“These [West Virginia] activists hold the typical concerns of having a gas pipeline run through the yard: if it leaks it poisons the water, the font of the incredible biodiversity in the area; there’s a two-and-a-half-mile blast radius if it explodes; the pipeline is taking their land through eminent domain against their will for resource extraction that they feel will not benefit them or their neighbors.”

It sounds like their State is going to ruin a pristine area – sounds like the Delta.

“Virginia’s governor, Ralph Northam, took $50,000 from MVP’s largest shareholder, EQT Corp, and another $199,251 from Dominion Energy, major shareholder of the Atlantic Coast Pipeline being built nearby.” Sounds like Jerry Brown taking $90,000 from Stewart Resnick and other Central Valley farmers before making his decision. And the Director of the DWR is now Karla Nemeth, wife of an executive strategist with the Metropolitan Water District. Too much corruption and money in government.

These people weren’t always activists, but recently became so. Their resistance started almost four years before that. They went through all of the steps to fight it: the comment periods unheeded, the independent environmental and archeological studies snubbed, the court challenges lost, the demonstrations ignored, the politicians petitioned and rebuffed.

Sound familiar? We in the Delta have been doing all that for twice as long and also have had our comments unheeded our attendance at their meetings ignored and rebuffed.

California is supposed to be the environmental leader, the protector of the oceans and rivers, believers in science-based government. Yet here we are. If the US House Bill with the rider to not allow law suits on the WaterFix passes, since law suits may be our final chance to stop the Delta Tunnels, construction might begin. I’ll be interested to see how long the tree sitters can stop construction in West Virginia.

Maybe our next Governor will understand we want California to be an environmental leader again and protect the Delta.

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