Home Dominion Power Sen. Tim Kaine Cites “Very Suspicious Circumstances” of Pipeline Approvals; “please do...

Sen. Tim Kaine Cites “Very Suspicious Circumstances” of Pipeline Approvals; “please do not stop your activism”


This will be quick, but I didn’t want to let the day end without posting about this article in the Roanoke Times, “Politicians react to FERC pipeline certifications.” Specifically, check this out by Sen. Tim Kaine (bolding added by me for emphasis):

U.S. Sen. Tim Kaine used the phrase “very suspicious circumstances” Monday to describe how a federal agency announced it had approved two deeply controversial natural gas pipelines that will burrow through different regions of Virginia.

Kaine, a Democrat who was in Roanoke Monday, observed that notices from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission about the commission’s endorsement of the Mountain Valley Pipeline and Atlantic Coast Pipeline were distributed after 7 p.m. Friday — timing clearly intended, he said, to inhibit news coverage going into the weekend.

“When somebody puts something out at 7 o’clock Friday night, they’re trying to hide it,” Kaine said. “That means they’re ashamed of their decision. Why would they be ashamed of it?”

The senator noted too that a vigorous and “stinging” dissent by Commissioner Cheryl LaFleur was significant, partly because such dissents rarely occur on the commission, he said. LaFleur, a Democrat who has been a commissioner since 2010, wrote, “I cannot conclude that either of these projects as proposed is in the public interest.” The two commissioners who voted to approve the pipelines are both Republicans appointed by President Donald Trump who recently joined the commission.

What’s particularly fascinating is the politicians Sen. Kaine seems to be in agreement with – Del. Sam Rasoul (D-Roanoke), Del Joseph Yost (R-Pearisburg), Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA-09), Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Cliff Hyra – and who Sen. Kaine seems to be in disagreement with – most prominently, Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who earlier today appeared on the right-wing talk radio show of Donald Trump’s former Virginia co-chair to tout the pipeline approvals. Strange bedfellows, huh?

Finally, check out the following comments by Sen. Kaine about what those of us who (strongly) oppose the pipelines should do next.

“‘If you do not like this decision there are other agencies that still have to weigh in,” he said. “If you are active about this, please do not stop your activism. Please let these other agencies know what you think about it.'”

Sounds like good advice to me – thank you Sen. Kaine!


  • dirich

    Don’t give Morgan Griffith too much credit for agreeing with Senator Kaine. In my personal meeting with Griffith, he stated that he was in favor of the MVP. He is merely in disagreement with the power FERC enjoys. Also, in his Monday, October 16, 2017 E-Newsletter, Griffith writes:

    Energy Secretary Rick Perry recently offered this view in testimony before the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy, on which I serve. His optimism marks a refreshing change from the last Administration.

    On February 23, 2012, then-President Obama ridiculed the idea that more oil drilling would lead to lower gas prices in Tampa, Florida. He mocked the idea that to lower gas prices, “Step one is drill, step two is drill, and step three is keep drilling,” and added, “You know there are no quick fixes to this problem, and you know we can’t just drill our way to lower gas prices.” According to AAA, the national average gas price at the end of that month was $3.70 per gallon.

    Oh, how the times have changed. In contrast, on October 10 of this year, the Secretary General of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Mohammad Barkindo, offered a different view: the United States needed to cut oil production to keep prices up. Barkindo called on oil producers to take “extraordinary measures” to balance the market and said, “We urge our friends in the shale basins of North America to take this shared responsibility with all the seriousness it deserves.” When the oil barons of OPEC are calling on America to, in essence, slow down production of oil, you know the world has changed. Since the days of the oil embargo in the 1970s until American ingenuity made the shale basins productive, OPEC dictated the world oil price. According to AAA, the same week he made that statement, the national average gas price was $2.481 per gallon, and that price was still slightly inflated because American oil refineries are recovering from the hurricanes of September.

    Additionally, Yost has not been an eager volunteer to aid the local Preserve groups such as Preserve Montgomery County and Preserve Giles County, counties he represents. He has not volunteered to assist; he has not attended meetings as an ally;and he has not spoken as a leader in the anti-pipeline fight. In contrast, Chris Hurst, as soon as he was a candidate, attended PMCVA meetings, training sessions to resist pipelines via non-violent actions should they become necessary, and has stayed in touch with groups fighting the MVP. Most importantly, he has spoken out against the pipeline frequently and strongly and publicly.

    You did not mention State Senator John Edwards of Roanoke who has been an ally of
    pipeline fighters since almost the beginning of our fight.