Fight to stop proposed gas storage facility continues with activists' release from jail

Apr 26, 2013

Three opponents of a proposed gas storage facility near Seneca Lake were released from jail early Thursday. The activists were sentenced to fifteen days after trespassing on property owned by Inergy Corporation, but were released after about a week. Inergy is seeking approval to store millions of barrels of butane and propane in an old salt cavern near Watkins Glen.

Opponents of the proposed gas storage facility gathered Thursday to celebrate their co-activists’ release from jail.

Members of the group Gas Free Seneca say the project will bring unwanted truck traffic and pollution to the lakeside. They also say the caves proposed for storage lie along a geologic strike slip fault.

Cofounder Yvonne Taylor says this is just the beginning of her group’s fight against Inergy.

“You may be a multimillion dollar corporation, Inergy, with the oil and gas industry behind you, but you have messed with the wrong town.” 

One of those released was celebrated author and scientist Sandra Steingraber.

“How lucky we are to be born in a moment when we can do something truly meaningful.  And for me that not only includes stopping fracking, but also halting the infrastructure for fracking of which, that facility over there, is part of that. And we’re going to win. I am playing to win,” she said.

Meanwhile, Inergy maintains similar projects have been operating safely in the region for 50 years. They say the storage facility would bring forty million dollars in investment to the community.

Opponents counter that none have been as large or in areas as vulnerable as this.