The movement to stop Sunoco’s dangerous gas liquids pipeline in Pennsylvania is continuing to grow. The state Department of Environmental Protection’s decision to hit the pause button at the beginning of 2018, citing the company’s “unlawful conduct,” has only emboldened residents to fight harder to protect their communities from this dangerous pipeline. And the pressure has been building from other lawmakers around the state.
On December 18, Senator Andrew Dinniman, who has worked closely with communities along the Mariner pipeline route, wrote a letter to Wolf to outline many of their concerns. He told Wolf that the project "has caused significant distress" in communities in Chester County. And citing the contamination of almost two dozen private water wells, a dangerous sinkhole, and other instances of environmental damage, the Senator called on Wolf to “halt construction on this pipeline until such time that our constituents' concerns are resolved."
Other lawmakers are stepping up too:
-On December 12, State Rep. Becky Corbin asked Wolf to “thoroughly review this project to consider all potential public safety and environmental impacts."
-Less than a week later, State Senator John C. Rafferty requested a review of the Mariner East’s safety and environmental impacts.
-On December 20, State Representative Carolyn Comitta requested a "temporary halt to construction while a comprehensive risk assessment can be done."
-The same day, State Rep. Duane Milne wrote a letter calling for “a complete reboot of the Mariner East 2 pipeline," adding: “There comes a point when enough is enough."
-Thornbury Township Chairman James Raith wrote a letter dated December 23 with a blunt message: "We are calling on you to exercise your executive power and reign in this project."
-State Rep. Greg Vitali urged Wolf “to begin a broad assessment of the safety and risk of this project."
-State Rep. Chris Quinn wrote to Wolf on January 3 calling for a risk assessment: "The regulatory responsibility for the pipeline lies with you and your administration."
-A January 12 letter from State Senator Tom Killion supported creating a risk assessment, saying that “Pennsylvanians need to know how pipeline leaks can affect their safety, and we owe them this information as responsible public servants."
With more lawmakers signing on to pressure Governor Wolf, the movement to stop Sunoco will only get stronger.